Possibly the world's most popular inclination, the impulse to export your suffering to another seems to be near-universal. Not confined to any race, sex, or age category, the impulse to cause pain appears to well up from deep inside human beings. This is mysterious, because no one seems to enjoy pain when it is inflicted on them. Go figure.


Postby admin » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:28 pm

Part 1 of 2


In the foreground in the centre (see Fig. 87 and Plate H) a fish is swimming in the waste water. It has been steered out of its true element. This is the already familiar picture of the Christian church, and Bosch shows what he felt to be lacking in this church in his time. The fish -- ichthys, gasping for air is largely covered by a red cardinal's cloak, armoured and equipped with signs of war-like power. A sword hangs from its side; the round symbol of the earth, which we met round the neck of the heron in the group discussed above, and which can also be seen in the Mars ship in mid-air above on the right, can be found again on the shield on its back. The fish has other characteristics of a warship: in the times of Bosch the Popes had temporal power and their own earthly domain; they made war, politics, and intrigued, like all other rulers. An old witch is steering the figure by means of a wooden cooking-spoon; a totally black figure beside her is fishing.

Fig. 87. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Fish and the duck ship of education (detail from The Temptations of St. Anthony).


The Roman church was steering towards the winning of bread, i.e. the acquisition of earthly possessions in the widest sense. One need only think of the innumerable institutions of the church which were constantly fishing for worldly goods. The mast of the fish-ship has been erected upon the iron armour of external power, and its stay-rope has been fastened to the red of the cardinal's cloak. In this picture Bosch wants to indicate the condition of the administration of the church in his time.


A shrivelled-up schoolmaster has hidden himself in a vessel which has the shape of a hollow drake (see Fig. 87 and Plate H). It has already been seen that the drake is the symbol of active education. The figure is pulling a tiny skiff on a rope, in which a young pupil is sitting who is tearing the hair from his head in misery and anger. A holy white stork that has been plucked is grinning at him, i.e. what is sacred, beautiful and true is in reality withheld from him and only arid rules, dead formulae and empty words have become his portion in education. It looks as though it is the schoolmaster who is paddling on the figure of education with his hands. But in reality a black woman, who carries a cage on her back is steering it; she is in fact holding the rope. The cage, also found in the picture of The Prodigal Son, is the symbol of being imprisoned. Within it there is imprisoned a small ape, the symbol for the stunted physical body of the young pupil who still wants to play. This shows what the poor children feel if they are forced to direct their souls which are longing to learn, towards dead subjects offered in the form of dull rigid ideas. The dark old hag camouflaged under an innocent red mantle keeps the whole in motion by means of a rope; a ray, the symbol of fear, serves as both sail and banner for the ship. This was how Bosch experienced education even then. The wooden spoon is missing; in those times, schoolmasters were badly paid. We discuss what is written on the roll of parchment which is lying before the schoolmaster in Note 19. Note 2 The Prodigal Son and Note 17 St. Anthony mention more about the tradition which unites schoolmaster and duck. For an historical comment on the spectacles worn by the schoolmaster see Note 18.







We have seen how Anthony, behind whom Bosch conceals himself, has demonstrated the state of the Christian church (the fish) and of the education of the young human race (the drake). Above this last group the main aspects of the living together of people in middle Europe are shown by Bosch, in the distorted figure of Mary with the child and Joseph on the flight into Egypt, surrounded by the three kings (see Fig. 88 and Plate H). Seen superficially this appears to be blasphemous; but in reality it is a spiritual vision, in which the positive element has, as is Bosch's wont, been painted small and inconspicuously.

Fig. 88. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Materialism and the Christ impulse (see Plate H) (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).


Mother and Child

This reference to the flight of the Holy Family into Egypt expresses that personified wisdom had to flee to the darkness of Egypt. The name Egypt, literally translated, means black earth, which can also be called dark matter. In Egypt the philosophy arose which finally led to the worship of matter; the idea of preserving corpses from decay by embalming them points to the beginning of materialism. As is described in the Gospel of St. Matthew, Joseph, a descendant of the wise King Solomon led the child of Wisdom and his mother out of the power of Herod and was forced to seek shelter in Egypt for a time [xii].

What was it Bosch intended to demonstrate in his rigidified mother and the mummified child? Before this question can be answered and the picture described, something else must be considered that will help us to grasp and understand the painter's conception.


In ancient times Maria-Sophia was regarded as the personification of cosmic wisdom (the name Sophia means wisdom, and the cathedral in Constantinople that was named Hagia Sophia was dedicated to Divine Wisdom). The wisdom of the stars is the bread of heaven; therefore the Mother of God is pictured either in a cloak full of stars or of ears of corn according to whether it is desired to portray her light-bringing or her nourishing aspect. In those old times the wisdom of the stars kindled in man a form of knowledge which was not then intellectual, but which has since been transformed and developed into modern intellectual knowledge. This knowledge became the "alma mater" -- bounteous mother -- of the Universities, and natural science and technology are the fruits of this materialistic world philosophy. Man has gradually learned to control the world of matter.

Bosch has painted the representation of the rigidified virgin of the stars and her wasted child, materialism. The witchlike mother is holding the infant on her lap with one wooden hand; both sit in a split tree-trunk -- the image of superstition -- which expresses the view that materialism is madness before God or superstition. The snake's tail with which this false Sophia is furnished is the same which completes the snake-form of Lucifer. This image of superstition, the wooden mother, is borne in the waste water by a giant mouse -- but she herself does not guide her mount. The mouse has already been described as the symbol of grey everyday occurrences [65] and it is easy to grasp that Bosch here indicates that this form of knowledge cannot lead to wisdom, but allows itself to be diverted by a multitude of everyday needs, and thus can only serve a technology that aims to relieve all these needs.

The figure of Joseph

Joseph, who according to the Gospel of St. Matthew harkened to the voice of his angel also stands here in the background. Unlike the other figures that surround him he is no caricature because now, as then, there are men -- though only in the background -- who are guarded by a great shield from the tumult of the world. He represents a group of men who listen to the word of the Spirit.



These three caricatures of kings bring no gifts, but are representatives of the egotistic forces of personality which exist in society. It seems to us justifiable to draw a comparison between the true three kings of the Gospel of St. Matthew, and the three estates of the realm in the 15th and 16th centuries. At the beginning of the first century the representatives of the archetypal capacities of the human soul, thinking, feeling, and will, brought the fruits of their activities in the form of gold, frankincense and myrrh to the Divine Child. In Bosch's times the three estates -- the clergy or, according to Socrates the philosophers, the aristocracy, and the third estate, the bourgeoisie, were supposed to bring their gifts to the world. These three estates were held rigidly apart in the Middle Ages. The spiritual leaders were supposed to cultivate the spiritual life, the aristocracy to foster justice, and the bourgeoisie the economic life.

To the left of the group there is painted a knight who is setting forth to hunt with a falcon, and carries a hunting horn. He is spurred, and sits on a creature that is half horse, half jar, and he is wearing a large shield against his knee. He is a representation of the second estate of the Middle Ages, the spiritual leaders, or its spiritual life. That is no falcon on his left hand, but a mockingbird, a symbol through which Bosch has already expressed so much in other places. This has already been explained and the meaning of the mockingbird here can be taken as read. The jar which forms the rear half of the horse on which the king is mounted is painted directly below the emblem of mockery. As it is the image standing for the container of the forces of the soul this jar should be standing upright, but here it is horizontal, causing at least half of the soul content to be wasted. This rear half of the mount can also be seen in connection with the stupid cow on the left inner wing. Stupidity also leaves everything to take its course.


The king has the wings of a jay instead of arms. The jay, as a symbol, is to be found several times on the central panel of The Garden of Heavenly Delights (see Prodigal Son Note 2) [65] (p. 94). It is the representation of Luciferic forces which can tempt man to fanatical enthusiasms that take his attention away from the real needs of the earth [xiii]. This king in a beautiful robe of feathers bears a pseudo-wisdom which will not help him to action. His head is a thistle. This straw-like plant, which grows on poor soil, belongs with the symbol of the jay, as is also the case on the central panel of the Hortus Deliciarum. Here too this flower expresses that only Satanic ideas grow on such bad soil. The red cap with flame-like decoration again indicates the Luciferic nature of this king. The armour, spurs and shield are the signs of his desire to exercise power on earth.

The king on the far right, who represents the aristocracy, has few attributes. The heron, symbol of death, looks forth from his vizor. This probably means that the aristocracy had become more and more an empty shell. The originally self-perpetuating race of the aristocracy, which relied upon the blood tie, had the task of guarding the land and its people, and of exercising all other judicial rights within the state to keep the balance between the two other estates. Only the outer form, the suit of armour, has remained in this figure.


The king in the middle looks like a well-to-do burgher of the Burgundian time: proudly he sits on his horse, in flamboyant dress; imitating the aristocracy he gazes haughtily about him. A plant-like object, which is in fact the sign of a florin, sits on top of an apple on his head. This man represents the third estate -- the bourgeoisie. Because the sign of money is hovering above his head, the merchant, who is growing rich and powerful, bears the fruit of the fall of man in his head; for Bosch always paints above people's heads what is going on inside them. The urge to earn money is indicated by the sign of the guilder or florin.


The Child in the Water

Right in front of this large group a small unobtrusive child is standing erect in the water. Neither his arms nor legs can be seen. The small body's chest protrudes like a dove's; on his head stands a small bowl containing food, in which there is a spoon. This child has a remarkably beautiful and serious face, the same that Bosch has painted on a picture now in Vienna, which is justly entitled The Playing Jesus Child (see Fig. 89). This key theme immediately elevates all that is negative in the large group from the sphere of mere criticism to a mighty statement of the recognition of all that is lacking in society, and at the same time gives an indication for a possible positive future. For that which descended in the form of a dove upon Jesus at the Baptism in Jordan, is symbolised here in the child with the bowl of gruel on his head standing in the waste water. Note again that the significant thoughts in a man's head are painted above it.


Fig. 89. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The playing Jesus Child. Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum (reverse side of Fig. 48).

Goethe wrote "we see the Master in his economy". Bosch once again shows himself to be a master-painter. In the fewest possible brushstrokes he shows that in the child -- the principle of the Son -- there were prepared the forces not only of spiritual nourishment (gruel) but also the creative forces (the spoon as emblem of creativity) and that He who said "I am the bread of life" has made man free to make use of these forces. The child in the waste water has neither arms nor legs, by which Bosch would say that this child would be taken up and carried, as Christophorus lifted and carried Him, thus bearing the heaviest of all burdens across the water onto solid land. Bosch has painted Christophorus; the picture hangs in the Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, Rotterdam.

If humanity does not deny its true nature, when there are more bearers of the Christ who will raise the child up out of the water, then there will be a possibility that all the other figures will be transformed into positive ones. Then the infant of materialism can be released from its swaddling bands, and knowledge of matter, which has previously overwhelmed everything else, can become changed into a force that serves. The other child, in the group that is a commentary on education, which is in a vertical line below the other two children, will then no longer despair, but will receive an education that is worthy of the human being. The three kings will be metamorphosed into kings who truly lead and who can improve the social life of man; only then will all men become brothers.



On the left, beside the platform and immediately next to the group that has just been discussed, there are three fellows standing in the waste-water; one is dressed as a priest and has a human form but the head of a pig -- he is pointing to a particular place in an open book; the second is a badger/long-tailed monkey figure with a reversed funnel on his head; the third is a cloaked figure in which a heron is hidden; it has a nest and an egg on its head (see Fig. 90 and Plate H). The typical signs of the powers that are working against man's thinking, feeling and will have been discussed previously [65] as they appear on a round painting by Bosch (Fig. 91, Note 20). Suffice it here to say that the first devil attacks the head, the seat of thinking, the second the heart, the seat of feeling, and the third the limbs, the seat of the will. If one would call the three powers of opposition by their old names they would be Ahriman, Lucifer, and Assurias. Here, standing in the waste water to the right of the platform a man is painted with two demons behind him; the signs of the three opposing powers are used in these three figures. The man, who is dressed as a priest, has the head of a pig. The pig is known to be very intelligent if it wishes to gratify its instinctual desires. This priest can think cleverly, like the pig, about what he is reading. He is provoked by the false and selfish badger/long-tailed monkey behind him. This luciferic demon has a reversed funnel on his head; thus he is shielded from the rain of ideas which can descend from heaven. In the background there stands a concealed heron, in other words, death. He bears a nest with one egg in it on his head. From this it can be deduced that once again a germ is hinted at, which still needs to be brooded upon and hatched, as has already been described in section 6 Anthony. The egg-germ, the tendency to materialistic, dead thinking, rests upon the head of the heron. The heron (death) and the spoonbill (Ahriman) are akin, and here there is a figure representing dead thinking with that germ "in" its head, which will later manifest as materialism. All this must be seen in relation to that which appears through the rent in the priest's robe, the skeleton (death) and blood (desire). The book bearing a seal from which the priest is reading is probably the Apocalypse of St. John, or Holy Writ in general. If all this is correct Bosch, in this detail, wished to put before us a representation of the fact that the holy books are often falsely interpreted by scoundrels.

Fig. 90. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The three fellows in the waste water (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).


Fig. 91. HIERONYMUS BOSCH; The three opposing forces attacking man. Rotterdam, Museum Boymans-van-Beuningen.


The complementary figure to the group discussed above is the figure of a man with a top hat and well groomed beard. He also appears on the central panel of The Hay Wain triptych. Here a cloth is spread out before him on which is drawn a severed foot; a fetter lies beside it. (See Plate G and Plate I). There is a picture from the studio of Bosch, in private ownership (see Note 19), which only consists of the central panel of The Temptations of St. Anthony. On this the content of this section is more clearly shown (see Fig. 92). Here the little man can be seen to be surrounded by several Signs of the Zodiac, and his significance becomes plainer: he is one of the magicians and astrologers who wandered about the land. His horoscopes and prophecies, which declare a man's destiny to be completely fixed and laid down, take from the individual a portion of his liberty. This is shown by the severed foot and the fetter. In the purgatorium of The Garden of Heavenly Delights this severed foot can also be found beside the writing demon, and has the same meaning. Bosch, who it is clear from the Hortus Deliciarum [xiv], was familiar with the Zodiac and planets must have hated the swindlers who degraded true astrology to a worthless game, as frequently happens today with the signs of the constellations of the Zodiac. Here again the nest with its egg is present, for here too the demon of the death of the soul has sowed his seed, like a wasp burrowing in a maggot to lay her egg in it. The two pictures can be regarded as the dogmatic and false explanation of the Bible on one side (right) and occult superstition on the other (left) (Fig. 92).

Fig. 92. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Detail from appointing in private ownership. The magician or trickster and astrologer, surrounded by the Signs of the Zodiac, a shackle to the right and a severed foot (not visible in this picture -- see Fig. 143)·



Once Bosch has shown in the lower section of the picture how man developed, and how church, education and state are developing, we can now learn to recognise the political situation of those times as seen by Anthony (Fig. 93 and Plate I). It needs to be re-emphasized that Bosch conceals himself in the character of Anthony, and in this way wishes to make his views clear without risking his life.

Fig. 93. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Picture of the Inquisition (see Plate I) (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).


A curious procession is advancing from the left; an armoured man of violence within a withered and rotting tree, who holds in his mailed fist a curious creature, which combines within it the traces of several heraldic beasts. In his left hand he holds a thorny cane, from the same arm a bow is hanging and on the tree above is the huntsman's hat. Before him are his dogs. Who is the quarry of this hunt? The Inquisition were mostly chosen from the Dominican Order. They were always sent forth in pairs as spies, and as has already been said, they were called the hounds of the Lord -- domini canes. This pair of hounds shows what is the nature of the power that is advancing on shoes made of bones -- it is the Inquisition. Various noble houses had identified themselves with the Inquisition of the Popes, for their mutual support. Inquisition and battles over inheritance went hand in hand. Thus the creature that is walking beside the violent man could be called the "heraldic animal". The dreadful servants follow in the train of this dual power.



Firstly there is cruelty with its disgusting aspect. The executioner with his instruments of torture as an emblem on his shoulder, and a broken jug as a cover for his head. The vessel of the soul is broken, the flowers in it are the same as those on the cult table in the centre, and show what flowers grow from such cults. Consistent with this there are the shrike and heron painted on the torture wheel, as symbols of death. Beside Cruelty stands the nightjar knight, with a huge dead pig. This symbol is familiar. When men come together in large numbers they easily get beside themselves. If they are provoked they carry out shameful deeds, of which they would never have been capable as individuals (e.g. a lynching). At such a time they are not properly awake, and act as if in a dream. They think that they have slain what is evil (the pig) in their fellow man. In truth they bear the forces of the pig in and about themselves. Here the theme of the right outer panel recurs. (In explanation of the executed pig we note that at that time animals were still executed in the same way as criminals.)




The fire that is painted above the group that has just been described shows clearly the havoc wrought on the land by the Inquisition and wars of inheritance and their consequences (see Fig. 94, Fig. 100 and Plate I).

Fig. 94. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Fire and destruction (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).


In the realm of the spirit (in mid-air) Diabolos is riding on the fish of pseudo-Christianity; the devil has flown off with the ladder i.e. with the possibility of mounting higher; the apocalyptic horsemen appear, fire bolts are shooting downwards; the "winged egg", that new beginning which is still floating in the air and would make a way for itself after the catastrophe, is straddled by a frog-like creature (see Note 9 and Fig. 98). This can also be seen on the left inner wing, on the left in the air, while in Fig. 99 too, the toad appears, as the first being to meet the one who has died.




In the foreground of the landscape an army is seen, in the act of withdrawing, having previously set a whole village on fire. A farmstead, with its barn and all that belongs to it stands quite undamaged, separated from the burning village only by a narrow canal; the inhabitants can be seen to carry on a normal life, quite unconcerned about the destruction of the neighbouring village. A woman is even standing in the doorway gossiping with a man who is tranquilly sitting on a bench; no one looks at the fire. This is a striking illustration of the lack of sympathy of people for the sufferings of others.


Only a narrow strip of water divides tranquillity and the most terrible catastrophe (perhaps this portrays differing political views). The paintings are not discussed in this book from the point of view of their technical accomplishments, but it must be pointed out how perfectly the landscape is rendered from an artistic point of view. Bosch's reproductions of nature and symbols are perfect in their artistic execution.
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Postby admin » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:28 pm

Part 2 of 2


The main theme of the central group (again painted small) can be found in the aperture of a castle that has fallen into ruins, where the Risen One appears and gives His blessing; beside Him there stands an altar with a crucifix and a burning light.

The space where this altar stands is also surrounded by demons (see Fig. 100 and Plate B and Plate J). A strange group has gathered around a cult-table by the parapet that bounds the outer court. A priestess with a snake hood, who is standing in the outer court holds out the cult-drink in a beaker. A half-veiled priestess beside her, whose hood is covered by a net of thorns reaches out for the bread; behind both these women who have an Egyptian look about them, an Ahrimanic being whose spoonbill beak is metamorphosed for the purpose is blowing smoke out of a pseudo-trumpet. An Ethiopian woman has just come through an archway; she is bearing a shallow silver dish on which a small frog-like manikin is sitting, which is holding a large egg in its uplifted arms. Two men are approaching the cult table. The green one, with a pig's head on which there sits an owl, is holding a lute, and holds a dressed-up fool's dog on a lead. The other, a pale old man with a hurdy gurdy, is limping along behind him on a wooden leg. Above his back, on the wall, a toad is sitting. With the Ethiopian woman and the other two priestesses these two form one group. To the right, beside the table, separated from it by a cicada, there is another group: a woman in a magnificent red garment and striking headdress contemporary with the time of Bosch, and Anthony in his monk's habit -- both are leaning against the parapet. Their unity is not only expressed by their posture; the painter has underlined it by the way in which the train of the woman's dress, emerging from a huge bustle, swings in harmony with the quiet folds of Anthony's monk's robe (see Fig. 96. Plate K.)



Fig. 95. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Detail from the central panel, The Temptations of St. Anthony. Cult table, pillar and the bridge to the lime-kiln death.


Fig. 96. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The different aspects of man (see Plate K) (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).


The first group about this round table has been designated as the "group of the black mass". In our view a cult of the body is being carried out at this table which is in opposition to the Christian sacrament of communion, but where bread and wine are likewise used. The purpose of this cult is to give men life forces which only have a brief duration without engaging the spiritual part of the human being, and in this way only to serve man's physical part and thereby the forces of the tempters that have found a home there. There have always been magic means to counteract the processes of ageing and becoming frail. These temporarily whipped up the life-forces, but simultaneously weakened and damaged soul and spirit. The Christian followers of St. John and the true alchemists censured these methods which artificially stimulated the lower life-forces; this can be easily verified by studying their writings. A single typical example is given here: In The Chymical Marriage of Christian Rosencreutz (Anno 1459) [1] at the beginning of the fourth day we find that the lion in the well is holding a large tablet on which is written:

Hermes princeps; Post tot illata; Generi Humano damna: I, Hermes, the Lord; After so much harm has been done to the human race
Dei consilio; Artisque adminiculo Medicina salubris factus Upon divine counsel; And with the help of Art; Destined to be a healing medicine
Heic fluo; Bibat ex me qui potest: Do flow here; Who can may drink from me;
Lavet qui vult; Turbet qui audet; Bibite Frates et vivite: Who wishes may wash in me; Pollute me who dares. Drink brothers and live.


Hermes the Lord here represents the uniting function of feeling as between will and thinking, which is also often depicted as a lion (cf. Note 8 where an example will be found). As the Christ stands between the will quality of the Father and the thinking quality of the Holy Ghost, the heart of the lion is used as a symbol for the Christ.

Again, on the seventh day the Knights of the Golden Stone are given five commandments, which begin with the words:

"Ye gentlemen, knights, thus shall ye swear ..." and then the fifth commandment is "Ye shall not desire to live longer than is the Will of God".

Jeroen Bosch [xv] must have known what is quoted above from Rosicrucian sources which only came to be written down about a hundred years later. A man must care properly for his health, not in order that he may enjoy a longer life, but to strive for a maximum in achievement in the divine-spiritual sense. Bosch now paints next to each other the two things hinted at above:

1. The true Mass, by which, if the Christ is spiritually present, men can be "healed" of the hurts of the Fall and its consequences. [?]

2. The false mass, at which the life-forces are temporarily stimulated in order to enjoy physical life.

The painter shows that the old man with the hurdy gurdy (symbol of the physical body) who has been crippled by the hardening processes, and the man with the lute (symbol of the life-body) (see Fig. 97 and the "musicians' hell", in the purgatorium [xvi]) are approaching the table at which a false and only temporary medicine is offered for their damaged bodies, i.e. the withered life-forces. A toad is painted above the old man with the hurdy-gurdy; for the pig-headed man with the idiot's dog and an owl on his head a prepared drink is held out. The bread too is ready, and both come from the same kitchen -- while a frog with an egg is brought in by a black third priestess. None of these symbols are unknown to the reader, and it is clear that the old man hopes to be able for a time to feel himself again a potent "male" (the toad) and that the pighead is concerned to rejuvenate his procreative powers, while in the process of stimulating the life-forces those of the intellect (the owl) will also be excited. He wears on his breast the round emblem of the Mars-like earth forces, which fits in with the whole. The fool-dog emphasizes the habit of sniffing out sensations which would be appropriate to puberty, but are here ridiculous.

Fig. 97. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Detail from the purgatorium (The Garden of Heavenly Delights). Madrid, Prado Museum




It is mentioned in the Golden Legend that while travelling in a wasteland Anthony found a silver bowl, and said to himself "How did this bowl get here, where there is no trace of men? If a traveller had dropped it he surely could not have lost it, because of its size? This is your trick, oh devil, but you will never be able to deflect my will". Upon this he found a great heap of pure gold, but he fled from this gold as if it were fire.

We shall return to the gold that can be found in the two beakers; the silver dish here is the silver bowl on which sexual rejuvenation is offered by a black priestess who is herself full of vitality. She enters from a neighbouring building where she has been celebrating her secret cult of birth. The fainting soul that we have come to know in Fig. 65, and which is now sitting on the silver dish, bears the egg, a new beginning of the power of the life-forces. All this symbolises what Anthony avoided receiving from the devil in the desert. The silver dish is the so-called H moon", which expresses those soul-forces in which human feelings dwell. When the devil mirrors himself in this dish men experience everything in a distorted form.

One more explanation must be added, namely why the small naked animal on the dish has been called both the fainting soul and the frog. It is the case with imaginative pictures that they show certain aspects which overlap each other. Fig. 98 shows that in the time of Bosch the frog was regarded as the progenitor of children, i.e. sexual potency; it is clear in this picture that the frog, standing before the Tree of Life, is bringing children. A certain "Christof Fros(ch) hower" in Zurich, made use of this little picture and had his name written upon it because several frogs are on it and it made a sort of sign for his business. We have not been able to find the original picture without the added name. This reproduction is from a copy in the possession of the bookshop "Erasmus", Basel. The picture gives clear evidence of the idea that the symbol of the frog must be considered together with the forces of procreation. Various fairy tales point in this direction. The Tree of Life in the background also reinforces this idea.

Fig. 98. Emblem of the bookprinter Christoph Froshower in Zurich. A copy exists in the bookshop 'Erasmus', Basel.

In addition, while the discussion is side-tracked -- the notched tail-trains must be pointed out, which are worn by the old men, and which correspond to what is seen in the demoniac figures in that picture by Bosch in the Munich Pinakothek (Fig. 99) which we would like to call "the revival of the individual soul in the purgatorium after death". In that picture various people are ascending from their graves as soul-images to undergo their experience of hell-fire. The tormentors of the soul appear, wearing the same kind of notched tail as the two here, and the first thing that is experienced by the individual who awakens in this region is his toad, his sex when he was a physical being on earth.

Fig. 99. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Detail from a picture known as a fragment of a Last Judgment, which we should like to call "revival of the individual soul in the purgatorium". Munich, alte Pinakothek.

Fragment of a Last Judgment

To return to the cult-table -- the three priestesses are the counterpart of the three kings that were found in section 26. There, three male figures were appropriate where the birth of spiritual forces in the soul (the spirit-child) was concerned, but here the figures are female, because the scene deals with the birth of natural man, which has always been felt to be directed by goddesses. Man's memory that he had come forth from the eternal womb of nature was the content of ancient moon mysteries.




The comparison with the three kings is plain also because one of the priest kings from the East, who was named Caspar, was an Ethiopian, and the third priestess here is also a black woman. Caspar represents the still unconscious, dark goodwill of man. In the black priestess the dark colour expresses the fact that embryonic development takes place in the dark of the metabolic realm. Historically, cults of the mother goddesses have continued from the times of the matriarchies up to the beginning of the Christian era. Remnants of such cults in all possible variations in decadent form are still historically demonstrable in the Middle Ages; undoubtedly Bosch knew of them and saw through them. By confronting The Risen One here with a frog cult he lifts the occurrence into the imaginative spiritual sphere and underlines the decadence of the false cult of the body and its life. The "works of the woman" as these cults could be briefly entitled because blood there has the chief role, are replaced by the work of the new bond or covenant. As man strives to unite with the forces of the Christ his own ego becomes the generating force out of which all life renews itself; he experiences his spirit as eternally masculine, his soul as eternally feminine as expressed in the language of mythology.

This brings us to the point that in our view was the master-painter's highest goal. The withered, senile old man represents essentially the aged physical body, because every source of rejuvenation is denied to it. The green one in front of him represents another aspect of man, namely his life-forces. Green through and through from overweening life-forces, the drive for enjoyment (the pig) and sniffing (the dog) dominates him with the result that only earthly material intelligence dwells in his head (the owl).

The four receiving figures at the cult table can justifiably be regarded as the unfolding of one being. In this way the dried up ancient is the picture of the old physical body which is imbued with the forces of death. The green one with the green trailing tendrils is a picture of the life body in which the desire to accept all that comes from the earth (the pig) to the extent of becoming stupefied -- suggested by the dog -- is inherent; the force of intelligence -- the owl -- also belongs to this. The woman with the conspicuous bustle and train can be regarded as the representation of the soul aspect.

Anthony in his simple dark garb would then be the complete expression of this unfolded being, and would represent the fourth member of the four aspects of a human being -- the ego. As has been said, there are good grounds for such an interpretation; this is not to say that what was said previously about these figures is not equally valid, for it is possible to recognise the greatness of Bosch as seer and painter in his ability to lift several layers of experience into consciousness, each of which is suggestively present. The woman in the life of Anthony, who is painted on the right inner wing in the air beside him on the fish, and who here is designated as his soul, is an example of this. For does not a man's wife represent for him as far as possible his soul-component? In our picture the soul of Anthony is reproduced on two levels. One, in the woman who kneels beside Anthony, and as far as she can, "accompanies" his true being. She could be described as a soul permeated by Christianity. The other is that part of the soul which turns to the natural processes of the body. This part is painted here as a grasshopper or cicada, and stands like a sword separating Anthony and his wife on one side from the old man and the pig-headed one on the other. It is directly opposite the three priestesses at the table. This cicada, which is pressing forward to the cult table, is determined to share the food and drink that is offered on the earth as the bread and wine of life. It has exactly the same shape as the lower part of the woman beside Anthony, but is smaller, and grey-blue in colour. It wants to imbibe unabashed what is offered, whether it be physical sensations or experiences of the soul which are connected with the sound of cicadas at night by moonlight or other romantic notions.



Probably this species of cicada (the symbol of pleasure as a source of excitement) is a reference to an old Greek legend, which tells of the artists Euonomus and Aristou, who had undertaken a contest in music in which a cicada played a part.

Anthony had rejected all this in the form of the silver moon dish in the desert, and had recognised it as a cunning gift of Lucifer. As we have now met the "silver dish" and its effects which is mentioned in the Golden Legend, we can also recognise the "great quantity of pure gold" of which the story speaks. Gold is always the symbol of the wisdom of the sun, and the great quantity of false gold with which in the legend the devil wished to tempt Anthony denotes treacherous pseudo sun-forces. The golden beaker at the false cult table is an allusion to those sun-forces which in reality weave and work in the etheric sphere and are only misused here.

We shall find another allusion to treacherous pseudo-wisdom in the neighbouring group; there the theme of Anthony as an ego amid the forces of his soul is further explored.


To the right, on the other side of the steps (see Figs. 96, 101 and Plate J), two figures are painted which are related to Anthony and his companion in different ways. Anyone who describes these figures as demons has not really understood them. Both the feminine nun-like figure as well as the one in front of her who is dressed like a schoolmaster, have beautiful dignified and intelligent faces.

Only their physical development has been curtailed. The female figure only consists of a head, trunk and arms; she lacks the lower part of the body. The masculine figure lacks chest and trunk, the legs are joined to his neck. Both sit with their backs propped against the thin wall of the parapet surrounding the outer court of the sanctuary and this wall is again supported by the pillar of the old covenant to which we shall return later. The woman is reaching out towards a bowl which is being offered to her by Anthony's companion. The man has a golden beaker beside him but no arms with which to give or take it. Their deep black hoods are their most characteristic features, and both the nun's hood and the master's cap hang down low. These head-dresses assist in the recognition of what Bosch intended to show in this group. Bosch expresses what is in the heads of his figures by what he places on them, as was said before. The black cap represents in the widest sense that life of imagination which had concerned itself with what is dark and material and of the earth.


In the narrower sense it means the self-centred thinking that has cut man off from the spiritual world above. The development of reason which was initiated in the culture of the Greco-Roman period of man's history had come to full fruition in the Middle Ages. The development of feeling in the soul goes hand in hand with that of reason, the inner life and movement of one's thinking is determined by the state of one's feeling. Thinking had not yet turned outwards to the world, and had remained narrowly confined. Christianity was experienced intimately within the life of feeling, but the Laws of Moses, which restricted individual freedom were still powerful in their influence.

In the elderly female figure who is fully formed in the upper half of her body the painter shows this soul of the Middle Ages which is filled with powerful feelings. This soul did not stand fully in life. On the contrary, she sought deeper inwardness by renouncing the world. This is indicated by the literally innumerable cloisters of the religious orders which were shut off from public life. Hence the painter has dressed the figure in a nun's garb.

The reasoning man as such embodies the other extreme. He does not really "stand" in life "with both feet", but rather squats; we could call him a stay-at-home, the left foot lacks a boot. His upper and lower parts are well formed. He lives strongly in his will as well as in his thinking. However the whole trunk is missing -- heart, chest and arms -- the possibility to act and to feel is lacking. But he has developed vast scholarship as indicated by the master's cap and his highly intelligent face which yet does not radiate any wisdom. This theological scholarship is a pseudo-wisdom, for he can achieve nothing by it, as he has no hands which could enable him to do deeds; he cannot grasp the golden beaker.

The development of the feeling and reasoning soul of the Middle Ages which is familiar to him stands before the inner eye of Anthony/Bosch. Even in its highest perfection in mysticism and scholasticism it failed to develop the "whole man", the full Christian. By this Anthony has recognised the historical situation of occidental man and himself. The decadent remnants of the older and the most ancient cultures and cults still rise up from the subsoil of his feeling soul (the woman beside him) and these are confronted by learning and inwardness as the Christian path (see Fig. 100 and Plate B). But all this remains in the "outer court" and does not lead to the real task. How should Anthony further direct his way? The staff lies beside him as a sign of further travel, and he wears the Tao sign, the sign of the balance which he would keep despite all that is still brewing in him.

Fig. 100. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: General view of the central panel. The Temptations of St. Anthony.


Anthony is not gazing towards the Christian altar, but with the Christ he is looking out into the world. In the midst of the tumult of humanity flowing hither and yon in all its doubtful ambivalence there stands the Christ as the Door to Death and Resurrection. As Anthony turns his face where the Christ is looking and lifts his hand in blessing, thus uniting himself in gratitude with the achievements of past human cultural epochs, a new succession begins; he enters the world as a follower of Christ. He leaves the golden beaker of learning filled with cold science because with this he cannot relieve any earthly needs. It is very probable that the two figures by the other side of the steps represent not only two aspects of soul, but also two individuals who "played a part" in the life of the painter. The motherly woman may have been a person who in his youth represented all that deepened his feeling, perhaps a nurse or his mother; the scholar may have been his teacher who sharpened his understanding and taught him to think logically. This makes it understandable why the womanly part of Anthony (the woman beside him) holds out her bowl to these two figures. His soul bears within it for always what it has gathered in its youth through its natural growth and the experiences associated with the romantic singing of the cicadas.


In order to give a general survey of the ideas which lie in the part of the central panel that has just been discussed the chief points must be gathered together.

The cupola of the ruin represents the remnant of the Temple of Solomon. What had been a stately fortress of ancient wisdom has decayed to a ruin, and demoniac beasts [?] inhabit it. Yet it is just here that the Risen One appears, who will make all things new; before Him a ray of light gleams, shining in through a hole in the wall. But almost no one recognises Him and on the left in the outer court there are people who are only preoccupied with their physical condition. [?] The only one who recognises Him is the initiate. On the right a pillar is joined to the cupola. It is the pillar of the old covenant which can be recognised by the pictures from the Old Testament on it.

Only the bridge, which leads on to the lime-kiln-death is undamaged and new as though only just built; man's dying forever remains new.

Fig. 101. HIERONYMUS BOSCH; Scholasticism and mysticism, the pillar of the old covenant, the Crucified and the Risen Christ by the altar. (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).

Let us now study the pillar of the Old Testament (see Fig. 101). At the top of the pillar Moses is shown, receiving the tablets from the hands of Jehovah. This is a form of representation that was common among many painters contemporary with Bosch. At the same level as Moses we find a calf on a mountain-top. Below this a dance of joy is being celebrated. On the middle part of the pillar an ape-like creature sits as if upon a throne.




A swan, an ox and a lamb are brought to him as offerings; an owl is looking out from a hole. Underneath this we find the famous large bunch of grapes which the messengers brought back from the brook Eshcol, the promised land. At the edge of the last picture, on a narrow border, one can barely discern a huntsman with a horn; he is preceded by a hound and he is following an indeterminate animal. The lowest part of the pillar is bare, or at least nothing more can be seen on it. Let us attempt to recognise a connecting idea underlying this series of partly conventional and partly imaginative pictures.

When the Judaic people were led from Egyptian slavery, Moses had received a new impulse from the divine-spiritual world for the leadership and education of that folk or race which had been chosen to bring forth the physical body of the future bearer of the Christ. The revelation of Horeb/Sinai is the culminating point of a whole series of extraordinary events, which of course were not recognised by the folk themselves without further explanation; therefore trials and temptations also had to appear. We know that Hieronymus Bosch was particularly concerned with the theme of temptation, and it cannot be a matter for surprise that here too the painter took the opportunity to show erroneous human reactions to divine impulses, in this case the reactions upon the receiving of the tablets. The picture of the Golden Calf stands at the same level as Moses; according to the Biblical text it was erected under Aaron's leadership. It represented a relapse into the old mysteries of life. Bock describes it in his Moses and his Time [13]. A few sentences are quoted here: "Two dramatic scenes belong together as polar opposites, of these one is the revelation on Sinai, the other follows the return of the messengers -- the setting up of the Golden Calf-image and the uproar of the mob of Korah.

The rock-like sayings of the Decalogue have hardly been translated from their revelation in thunder, and carried in human words, among them the sentence: 'Thou shalt not make any graven images', when the impatient folk, wanting their old traditions, build under Aaron's leadership a golden image of the holy Egyptian Bull of Apis. While Moses is on the mountain sunk in the vision of the archetypal images of the cosmic-supersensible cult, which he is to translate into the formal world of earthly priesthood, there takes place at the feet of the holy mountain the great relapse into the cult of Egypt. The spirits of the past, with their imposing magical greatness could more easily win power over the souls of the Israelites than the strict forces which would lead to ego-hood through the horrors of the desert and the fire storms from within the earth. A great part of the people fall to the Egyptian temptation. Not even Aaron can resist it. Moses, returning from the holy mountain, throws himself into battle against the suggestive past with merciless severity as if he were an incarnation of the fire of divine wrath; he casts down the image and with the aid of the Levites who are destined to be the bearers of the new priesthood, eradicates the Egyptian cult from the life and soul of the people down to the last traces."

Under the picture of the calf we find dancers pictured on the pillar, and we can assume of these that the subject is the dance about the Golden Calf. However dancing for joy is mentioned several times in the Old Testament. David too danced for joy, that the Ark of the Lord had returned. The description of this event can be found in Samuel II 6/14-16. "David danced before the Lord with all his might and was girded about with a linen ephod"; his wife Michal, the daughter of Saul, was ashamed of this dance. It is possible that Michal was afraid that by David's action the development of and pleasure in the physical body might gain the upper hand among the Jewish people, and that the higher organisation of the human being might become neglected. Bosch also seems to have thought on these lines, for directly in relation to this dance-scene he adds a scene that points to this. However this may be, the gestures of the dancers are strange. Once one has recognised the primitive joy on this picture it is not difficult to rediscover this joy in the dances of many lands. For this reason it is remarkable that, Erasmus Grasser has also perpetuated this gesture in his statuettes of dancers. This sculptor was a contemporary of Bosch, and, like Albrecht Durer and our painter Bosch he worked for a long time for the Emperor Maximilian (see Note 21 and Fig. 146 and Fig. 147).

Let us return to what it was that Michal, the wife of David, feared and that always threatens once high aims have been reached -- namely a relapse into the lowest sensations, a spreading infection of sensuality, which in the Bible is represented by the temptation by the Midiamite women. This relapse of interest from ego activity to physical activity is painted on the next level. The ape-like creature represents mere physical bodily existence, which must decay if the spirit does not, or does not as yet, wake within it. We have already found this symbol in the cage on the back of the demon who steers the duck-ship of education (see section 25) and will rediscover it on the back of the ox which goes over the bridge. Here the ape squats on a throne, and one of the dancers from the scene above sacrifices a swan to him; the horned ox is brought to him by a man who looks like a Turk, who carries the sign of the half-moon in his hand, by which he demonstrates his lack of faith, and a third figure carries a lamb in his arms and offers this kneeling to the enthroned ape-man. The swan is the representation of a purified soul which mirrors itself calmly in the ocean of the spirit; the ox represents the enlightened living thinking that was denied and decried by Arabism and the lamb is the symbol of the sacrificial power of the ego. Before us there stands a Satanic temptation to place the whole higher organisation of man completely in the service of his physical body. The awakening of intelligence belongs to this Ahrimanic attitude of the soul, therefore the owl is looking out through a hole. It can also be understood now why the giant grape is painted below. This hints at the Luciferic temptation which appeared in the people after the return of the twelve messengers led by Korah the Levite.

The crowd of Korah utopians, who believe that they can now understand and control all supernatural events themselves, unleash hurricanes from the innermost earth as the incense rises from their offering bowls; the Bible says that the earth was torn open and even the last trace of their presumption was eradicated through the fiery flames of cosmic wrath, while the sinners sank into hell. The natural catastrophe is the answer of the heavens to the errors of fanatics (see Emil Bock on Moses 4 ch. 16 v. 31) [13].

The giant grape is reminiscent of the whole event and here forms the nuclear picture of Luciferic temptation. It is likely that the last representation on the lowest border of the pillar gives the answer to both temptations, and that here Phineas the hunter is shown, who, with his white hound (his pure sense of smell,) puts to flight the black animal of the plague (the demoniac), for it was Phineas who checked the torment of sensuality through the might of the spear of the spirit (Moses 4 ch. 125 v. 7-18). The picture is too indistinct to permit of definite conclusions. It must however be remembered that with Bosch what is painted small always represents what is important in a positive sense, as was said previously.

Fig. 102. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The bridge from here to the beyond (detail, The Temptations of St. Anthony).


Fig. 103.HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The Hay Wain Triptych -- right inner wing. Madrid, Prado



Let us now study the covered bridge (see Fig. 102 and Plate L). It is reminiscent of the castle of Chenonceaux from the year 1515, one of the castles on the Loire which is both a castle and a bridge and was similarly built in spans across a river. Were Bosch and the engineer in contact? Below the passage for boats is closed, and through the windows a jay can be seen with a ladder, and a longbacked ox on which an ape-like creature is sitting. Between the spans of the bridge there is a large clock. As has already been said the whole is an imaginative representation of the process of dying. No one knows when his hour will strike, therefore it is no ordinary clock that is painted here, but a circle of the Signs of the Zodiac replaces the figures, as the hour is different for each individual. The bird of Satan, the jay, is already familiar as a symbol; on the central panel of the Hortus Deliciarum The Garden of Heavenly Delights, its symbolic value can be recognised most clearly, as that being which attempts to prevent all spiritual striving [65] [Fig. 106]. Here it can be seen that he has removed the ladder; by this Bosch is saying that every man had the ability throughout his life on earth to "ascend" in the development of his soul; once he has died this possibility has ended for the time being, and the human being in his spiritual entity can only remain at the level of soul life that he had attained. The jay is preceded by the symbol of the physical body, shrivelled, because now almost empty and deserted by the spirit; the ape-like creature that was discussed in the previous section is sitting on a longbacked ox. This representation is also comprehensible now. The cow who waits, has already been met in the Prodigal Son, as the picture of life-forces from which the human being is still nourished for a few days after passing through the gate of death. Here on the bridge between life and death the figure of the ox is no longer as previously the picture of the etheric (life-) body but has such a long back because a man's life-body after death gradually expands into the wide etheric world [58], [59].


Fig. 104. THE MASTER OF THE HOLY CROSS. ± 1400. The Annunciation. Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum.

On the right inner wing of The Hay Wain triptych the painter has painted a human being who is in the process of incarnating into a body, who is also riding on an ox. In this case the individual is riding towards a tower which is still being built (ref 65 p. 73). The reproduction is again given here (see Fig. 103). In Fig. 104 the building of the physical body by the angels is taking place. On the Lisbon altar- piece the human individuality is riding out of the tower, which can be regarded here as also representing the physical body, which was built long ago and has now fallen into ruin. Once a man has reached the other side of the bridge of dying, i.e. has lost his body and earthly life, he has become "naked". For he has shed these sheaths. One like the old man, goes down step by step into the water, as if into a bath, another has mounted on the roof and is about to dive from there; but all souls must swim through beneath the bridge; it can be seen that the entry through the spans of the bridge -- the gates to the purgatorium -- is closed to vessels, for the souls cannot bring anything with them; they must go through naked. In his usual consistent fashion Bosch has placed a white holy stork where the souls enter the ocean of the spirit. This bird has been mentioned several times, and represents the strength of the souls to raise themselves into higher regions of the spirit once they are no longer bound to a body. In other situations a different representation, the hart, is used as a picture for this process.


By making the bridge of dying end in a curious structure in three parts, Bosch wants to show various aspects of death. Through this the whole has become an intricate imaginative picture which can only be decoded by adducing the symbols that he has used elsewhere. Let us first turn to the curtain, which is fastened above to the lighthouse, and partially drawn; this indicates that a mystery is about to be unveiled (see Plate L). Above, the structure is an old-fashioned lighthouse, which corresponds to the lighthouse on the right inner wing, where it has already been discussed (section 19). Here, as there, the tower stands as a "memento mori", which must be clearly distinguished from the earthly tumult of men around it. The lower part of the lighthouse resembles the pumpkins which Bosch painted on the central panel of The Garden of Heavenly Delights. Here too the pumpkins are similarly decorated and represent the grave. It must be understood that the pumpkin can be regarded as the case housing the "fruits of life" which will scatter seeds out of it once the shell of the pumpkin has decayed. These fruits of life pass into the world ether like doves rising into the sky; so it can also be seen why there is a dovecot beneath the fire lighting the tower, and the soul-doves fly out from this. A woman is watching them. She can be looked upon as the midwife of these rising soul-doves. This woman can also be found on the right inner wing of The Hay Wain -- see Fig. 103.

The mortal parts of man flow out through a large hole below the lime-kiln pumpkin, and above on the left under the curtain the customs proper to a funeral are again shown. A funeral feast is being held at a round table at which a monk and a nun are sitting. Outside the curtain a cask can be seen on which a white jug is standing. These same symbols were found on the left inner wing where they have already been discussed. The bellows indicate the kindling of hell-fire.

Fig. 105. HIERONYMUS BOSCH; Cosmic Constellation (detail from The Temptations of St. Anthony).



In the air are two spiritual forms, directed towards each other; these dominate all the events of the central panel from the cosmic sphere; on the left is the distorted swan of Venus, on the right the warship of Mars (see Fig. 105). Beauty, purity, goodness and love can arise from the influence of Venus, if men are able to use her powers in a positive sense. Turned into their negative aspect, ugliness and unchastity, selfishness and licentiousness appear. Mars can give enterprise, courage and ability to act, the best attributes needed for attempting an effective following of Christ in the sense of the battling Anthony. But in the constellation that is shown here the forces of Mars will work in a negative way and will cause war and destruction. It should be noted that the swan of Venus here carries the ball at the rear, also the mast is to the rear, i.e. the forces of Venus are working in a distorted way. For a shield Mars has a round dish, which we have found again and again among the emblems as the sign of earth forces that are seeking for power; the warlike impression from this picture is striking. Bosch has already painted such an imagination in his youth (see Fig. 50, section 23, Prodigal Son).

These images in the air, i.e. the atmosphere which is spread over the earth, show the influences under which human life stood at the time. It has been seen that the initiate uses the forces of Mars and Venus in the positive sense; but most men are unable to defend themselves against the bad influences of Mars and Venus as they stand together here.


The cupola-roof gives an outstanding example of the fact that Bosch habitually paints the quintessence of his world conception unobtrusively, and yet quite exactly (see Fig. 100). For example the staircase still exists, and still leads upwards from the ruined pillar of the Old Testament opening on to the cupola. Within this cupola -- roofed space -- the Risen One appears. The indestructible life forces of nature have let several green plants grow upon the fragile stones of the ruin. Beside the steps to the right there is a bush, the symbol of the blossoming and decay of all life forces on the earth; for on the one hand it flourishes on the bare stones, on the other one can see that one branch has already died off; to underline the contrast still further Bosch has painted two shrikes on the dead branch. The beam below shows that this force of growth can also become rampant where below the bush, a prehistoric monster is squatting, while on the other side of this beam, a descendant of this species in the form of a lizard is clinging on tightly. On the other side, representing the spiritual opposite to this picture of the rampant, potentially degenerative forces of nature there is painted a Luciferic devil -- this represents the degeneration of the life of the soul.


Above, on the ruin there are two guiding symbols. They are introduced in such a concealed way that they only speak to those who are familiar with what is shown. It was the intention of the painter that laymen should not understand them and should merely regard them as the play of fantasy. But for those who in the present time would learn the meaning of the language of the works of Bosch it is essential to recognise such details precisely, for in order to be able to read a sentence one must first learn the letters and then try to understand the sense. It is the same with the pictorial language of Bosch. The hart has already become familiar as the symbol of the human soul in the physical body which can find the way into the spiritual world. This hart, the psychopompos within man's own breast, here carries a shrike upon his back which is to say that during its life upon earth the soul has already become familiar with dying.

Diagonally below the hart on the cupola, near the stair, a blue-white chicken is painted, which is going in the opposite direction from the hart. It is the picture of the new-born soulbird of a man in the spiritual world when his individuality is turning again towards an earthly birth. Hence the chicken has a different direction to travel than the hart. The symbol of the chicken, which also occurs with the same meaning on the right inner wing of The Hay Wain triptych once on the tower and once below it, cannot be understood without relating it to the book of The Chymical Marriage of Christian Rosencreutz[1]. Reference has already been made to this book. On pp. 82-6 this bird is mentioned. Bosch must have been familiar with such a typically Rosicrucian imagination already in his time, a hundred years before Valentin Andreae wrote it down. The changing colours and the use of the picture of the chicken correspond exactly with what can be found in the Chymical Wedding. Thus on the cupola here we find the ideas of the growth and dying in nature, the way into existence of the soul and an indication pointing to reincarnation. All these also lie in the well-known saying of the Rosicrucians which follows here:

Ex deo nascimur: We are born out of the Father God
In Christo morimur: We die in Christ
Per spiritum sanctum reviviscimus: Through the Holy Spirit We are born again.

The meaning of this saying extends so far beyond the limits of this book that a mere indication must suffice. The significance of the painting The Temptations of St. Anthony goes far beyond the level of its mere title. If was our intention to demonstrate this fact.

The pre-Christian word of the Mysteries "Know thyself", the word of St. John the Baptist, announcing the Christ "Change your ways" as also the word of Paul "Christ in me" all run as unifying threads throughout the whole painting. The demand, the annunciation, and the striving for the future which lie in these crystalline words are expressed by the painter in the sense of the Rosicrucians, together with the sharpest criticism of the aberrations of his age, which is still our own.



xii. Translator's note. The author seems to imply that the existence for a time of wisdom in the darkness of Egypt was necessary for ultimate redemption of materialism.

xiii. Translator's note. The Luciferic temptation often prepares the way for Ahriman.

xiv. The Garden of Heavenly Delights.

xv. Translator's note. Hieronymus Bosch.

xvi. Translator's note: in the earlier book ref. No 65.
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Notes to The Prodigal Son

NOTE 1, Section 2

The triptych is known as The Garden of Delights, in French Jardin des Delices. In later times this name was turned into Garden of Enjoyment.

Herrade de Landsberg, Abbess of the Cloister of St. Odile in Alsace (1167-1195) presented her inner visions in the form of illustrations [35], and entitled her writing Hortus Deliciarum, Garden of Delights, Joys or Blessedness. It can be assumed that this famous book was known to Bosch.

NOTE 2, Section 10

In The Garden if Heavenly Delights Bosch has painted a whole group of soul-birds, which is directed towards the human beings like the tip of a spear; it makes no difference whether the people have danced in pairs through the world, or have almost suffocated in loneliness within the cask of their soul: the soul moods represented by these birds are no stranger to anyone.

Fig. 106. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Soul birds from the central panel of The Garden of Heavenly Delights. Madrid, Prado Museum.


We give a list here of these soul birds and their most important meanings (see Fig. 106).

Owl (Strix): Earthly or terrestrial intelligence. It can also be taken to represent the intellect which is necessary for the pursuit of natural science.
Drake (Anas platyrhynchos): Teaching or the activity of educating.
Kingfisher (Alcedoatthis): The relationship of youths and girls. (From Caix and Alcyone; the myth is told by Ovid in his Metamorphoses)
Hoopoe (Upupa epops): The urge to look after small children (in ancient Egypt it signified parental love).
Duck (female) (Anas platyrhynchos): Longing to be taught and achieve education. Learning or receiving learning; the passive side of the drake.
Goldfinch (carduelis carduelis): The determination and ability of man to find his spiritual nourishment among the thistles on earth (often shown near the child Jesus).
Robin (Erithacus rubecula): Naive confidence in God and fate.
Woodpecker (Dryocopus martius): Determined martial courage to extract the worm from the tree of life, to catch the errors.
Jay: (Garrulus glandarius)

The urge to occupy oneself with things of the earth and seize them for oneself. He belongs to the family of the shrikes. Also indicates egoistic and materialistic drives to earn money.
Both the coal-tit and the jay can be seen in the middle of the central panel, near the large red alpha. The former bird, with its inability to sit still is a picture of human thinking which flutters hither and yon.

Tit-mice (species Paridae): Pictures for human thinking; the minute one thinks the bird is finally sitting still he is about to fly off.
This a true picture for the life of human thought; if one wants to hold the flights of ideas still one falls asleep and flies off into the life of dreams (see Fig. 106).

All these imaginations can be tested if one studies nature and the life-habits of these creatures carefully, and then adduces the ways in which they are utilised in the visual arts, in fairy tales, myths and legends.

NOTE 3, Section 9

The gate can also be found in the book Sinnepoppen by Roemer Visscher [63], who lived about 100 years after Bosch, and who was, as is historically verifiable, the head of the Rosicrucian movement in Holland. There too it marks the threshold between life on earth and life in the spiritual world.

This book was mentioned earlier in this study (see pp. 20 and 23). Before discussing the gate we venture to show a cartoon by a Dutch contemporary of Roemer Visscher, Pieter Quast, of which unfortunately there only remains an etching by Pieter Nolpe. This cartoon is exhaustively discussed by Rehorst [48] (see Fig. 107).

According to this writer the fact that Torrentius, as the head of the Rosicrucian movement, stood in intimate relationship to Roemer Visscher and his circle, is emphasised in a cartoon on the Rosicrucians from the 17th century.

Fig. 107. Cartoon of the group around Roemer Visscher after PIETER QUAST, etched by Pieter Nolpe. Rijksprentenkabinet, Amsterdam.

From left to right are the well-known personalities of the circle about Roemer Visscher: Brederode (poet), Maria Tesselschade (daughter of Roemer Visscher), P. C. Hooft (poet), Torrentius (painter, and after Roemer Visscher head of the Rosicrucian movement), an unknown man, Vondel (poet) who is juggling with a Church, because it took a long time before he decided to join the Roman Catholic Church; Roemer Visscher as an old king, Rodenburgh (from Belgium, appearing as a devil) and doctor Samuel Koster, The book The Fama lies on the ground.

Duycken en ghenoeghen.
Fig. 108. From the book Sinnepoppen by ROEMER VISSCHER, 1614 [63]

Underneath a short poem.

Houdt u reyn; Acht u kleyn; Vreest voor den dagh; Die niemandt Yerby en magh: Keep pure in soul; Be not proud; Fear the day; Which no one can avoid
In brief "memento mori" (Oh man bethink thee that thou must die).

To return now to the gate in "Sinnepoppen" Vol. II No. 6 by Roemer Visscher, we reproduce here the drawing entitled: "Duycken (i.e. be modest) en Ghenoeghen" (i.e. be content) (see Fig. 108).
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Notes to The Temptations of St. Anthony

NOTE 1, Section 2

In Urchristentum I Caesaren Und Apostel by Bock [11] pp. 177-8 we find the following said about Judas:

"The Messiah, whom he sought with intense devotion, really only stood before his soul as a greater Judas Maccabeus. He imagined that one day He would emerge, and accomplish a victorious miracle for the people by extinguishing with a mere movement of his hand the tangled relationships of political power, and setting up a universal, shining kingdom of God upon earth, enthroning himself in Jerusalem as its king and high priest. The betrayal was the last desperate attempt to compel Christ to perform that miracle for which Judas was waiting so impatiently, the revelation of the power of the Messiah."

NOTE 2, Section 2

Figure 109 is reproduced here for comparison, it is a picture by Gaspard Isenman (1435-92).

In this picture the vessel of the Holy Grail as well as the motif of the lantern is shown; this lantern will throw no more light, it is the symbol of the expiring spirituality of Judaism. As the painter Isenman was 15 years older than Bosch it seems likely that both drew their ideas from the same source.

Strasbourg, Colmar and Basel lie in a region where we may expect to find traces of the Rosicrucian philosophy. In The Chymical Marriage of Christian Rosencreutz; such regions are designated with golden rings, and said to be the home of those who are chosen [1] (pp. 45/46).

NOTE 3, Section 3

Steiner has several times described those who do not attempt to develop a capacity for discrimination, but live by naive illusions, in this way.

NOTE 4, Section 4

The Legenda Aurea. The "Golden Legend of the Saints, Told According to Written Evidence and Oral Traditions", was written by the Dominican Jacques, who was born in Voragine near Genoa (1230-98). He was bishop of Genoa from 1292.

In the 15th century there appeared a mass of translations of this book into many languages. Because the work of Jacques de Voragine was generally known, and regarded as guaranteed Christian (although some individuals regarded the whole work as unspiritual and materialistic), the art of that time often referred to his writings [64].

Fig. 109. GASPARD ISENMAN, I435-1492: Christ in the Garden of Olives, the kiss of Judas. Colmar Musee d'Unterlinden, painted 1482-1484.

Fig. 110. After HIERONYMUS BOSCH. Adoration of the Shepherds (note the large sparrow above and to the right). Cologne, Wallraf-Richartz Museum. [i]

NOTE 5, Section 5

One of the three brothers, whose face can be clearly seen, has the faint trace of a bandage of dedication above the knee. (In section 6 a similar trace of a bandage can be seen on the leg of the young Anthony.)

This face, the only clear one of the three brothers, is reminiscent of the face of the Prodigal Son. Various writers think it to be a portrait of the dead brother-in-law of Bosch. The remarkable thing is that the painter uses this face to give us a portrait of his own soul. He probably intends to conceal himself behind this face that no longer belongs to someone living.

NOTE 6, Section 5

As has already been discussed in the earlier part of this book, Bosch characterised the states of soul of the people in his pictures by means of birds; here too he is drawing upon the most ancient traditions. For proof that he is here using the sparrow to illustrate the ordinary man's soul we show above a painting in the Wallraf-Richartz Museum, Cologne, that is judged to be a copy of a work by Bosch, but all the same is important to explain his iconography (Fig. 110).

One of the three shepherds, who is looking round the corner, shows evidence of not too high an intelligence in his face; but also that he has an excess of the healthy feelings that live in ordinary people and which must not be underrated. In the right upper corner Bosch has painted a large male sparrow, the soul-picture of a simple man who has great, unclouded feelings.

On the left inner wing of The Temptations of St. Anthony the following birds, among others, appear as expressions of human moods of soul:

Sparrow (Passer domesticus): Soul mood of the simple man
Crossbill (Loxia curvirostra): Mood of those whose mouth is always full of Christianity and the Cross, but who avoid the inner content of these words.
Heron (Ardea cinerea): Mood of the person who is thinking of his death as something that is inevitable, also symbol of death.
Ibis (Ibis religiosa): Sacred mood of soul
Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia): The bird of Satan, in the Ahrimanic sense. For mood of soul it is a picture of intellectual rigidity that will only admit materialistic thoughts.
Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio): The bird of death. It does not appear on the right inner wing, but on all the other wings.
Mocking bird (cassicus cristatus). This was a new phenomenon for Bosch as it had only just been brought from South America in his time.: This appears on the right inner wing to denote self-mockery, and is the main motif for the mood of St. Anthony. In the purgatory scene on the right inner wing of The Hortus Deliciarum [ii] it is standing as the "mocker within man" on the mill-stone that is grinding the thoughts inside the man's head.

by Wikipedia

Ergotism is the effect of long term ergot poisoning, traditionally due to the ingestion of the alkaloids produced by the Claviceps purpurea fungus that infects rye and other cereals, and more recently by the action of a number of ergoline-based drugs. It is also known as ergotoxicosis, ergot poisoning and Saint Anthony's Fire. Ergot poisoning is a proposed explanation of bewitchment.

Signs and symptoms

The symptoms can be roughly divided into convulsive symptoms and gangrenous symptoms.


Convulsive symptoms of ergotism
Convulsive symptoms include painful seizures and spasms, diarrhea, paresthesias, itching, mental effects including mania or psychosis, headaches, nausea and vomiting. Usually the gastrointestinal effects precede central nervous system effects.


The dry gangrene is a result of vasoconstriction induced by the ergotamine-ergocristine alkaloids of the fungus. It affects the more poorly vascularized distal structures, such as the fingers and toes. Symptoms include desquamation or peeling, weak peripheral pulses, loss of peripheral sensation, edema and ultimately the death and loss of affected tissues. Vasoconstriction is treated with vasodilators.[1]


The toxic ergoline derivatives are found in ergot-based drugs (such as methylergometrine, ergotamine or, previously, ergotoxine). The deleterious side-effects occur either under high dose or when moderate doses interact with potentiators such as erythromycin.

Historically, eating grain products contaminated with the fungus Claviceps purpurea also caused ergotism.

The alkaloids can also pass through lactation from mother to child, causing ergotism in infants.


Dark-purple or black grain kernels, known as ergot bodies, can be identifiable in the heads of cereal or grass just before harvest. In most plants the ergot bodies are larger than normal grain kernels, but can be smaller if the grain is a type of wheat. A larger separation between the bodies and the grain kernels show the removal of ergot bodies during grain cleaning.


Removal of ergot bodies is done by placing the yield in a brine solution; the ergot bodies float while the healthy grains sink.[2] Infested fields need to be deep plowed; ergot will not germinate if buried more than one inch deep and won't spread their spores in the air. Rotating crops, using non-susceptible plants, helps reduce infections since ergot spores only live one year. Crop rotation and deep tillage, such as deep moldboard plowing, are important components in managing ergot, as many cereal crops, in the 21st Century, are sown with a "no-till" practice (new crops are seeded directly into the stubble from the previous crop to reduce soil erosion.)[3] Wild and escaped grasses and pastures can be mowed before they flower to help limit ergot infections.

Chemical controls can be used, but are not considered economical especially in commercial operations, and germination of ergot spores can still occur under favorable conditions.


Epidemics of the disease were identified throughout history, though the references in classical writers are inconclusive. Rye, the main vector for transmitting ergotism, was not grown much around the Mediterranean. When Fuchs 1834 separated references to ergotism from erysipelas and other afflictions, he found the earliest reference to ergotism in the Annales Xantenses for the year 857: "a Great plague of swollen blisters consumed the people by a loathsome rot, so that their limbs were loosened and fell off before death."

In the Middle Ages, the gangrenous poisoning was known as "holy fire" or "Saint Anthony's fire", named after monks of the Order of St. Anthony who were particularly successful at treating this ailment. The 12th century chronicler Geoffroy du Breuil of Vigeois recorded the mysterious outbreaks in the Limousin region of France, where the gangrenous form of ergotism was associated with the local Saint Martial. According to Snorri Sturluson, in his Heimskringla, King Magnus, son of King Harald Sigurtharson, who was the half brother of Saint King Olaf Haraldsson, died from ergotism shortly after the Battle of Hastings.

The blight, named from the cock's spur it forms on grasses, was identified and named by Denis Dodart, who reported the relation between ergotized rye and bread poisoning in a letter to the French Royal Academy of Sciences in 1676 (John Ray mentioned ergot for the first time in English the next year). "ergotism", in this modern sense, was first recorded in 1853; however, Sir Thomas Browne in his Christian Morals (published posthumously in 1716 although penned sometime in the 1670s) also made mention of 'ergotisms' .[4] Browne in turn, may have been introduced to the word through correspondence with John Ray.

Notable epidemics of ergotism occurred up into the 19th century. Fewer outbreaks have occurred since then due to rye being carefully monitored in developed countries. A severe outbreak of something akin to ergot poisoning occurred, however, in the French village of Pont-Saint-Esprit in 1951, resulting in five deaths.[5] The outbreak, and the diagnostic confusion surrounding it, are vividly described in John Grant Fuller's book The Day of St Anthony's Fire.[6]

There is evidence[7] of ergot poisoning serving a ritual purpose in the ritual killing of certain bog bodies.[8]

When milled, the ergot is reduced to a red powder,[9] obvious in lighter grasses but easy to miss in dark rye flour. In less wealthy countries, ergotism still occurs; an outbreak in Ethiopia occurred in mid-2001 from contaminated barley. Whenever there is a combination of moist weather, cool temperatures, delayed harvest in lowland crops and rye consumption, an outbreak is possible.

Poisonings due to consumption of seeds treated with mercury compounds are sometimes misidentified as ergotism.[10][11] As Dr. Simon Cotton (member of the Chemistry Department of Uppingham School, UK) notes, there have been numerous cases of mass-poisoning due to consumption of mercury-treated seeds.[12]

Salem witchcraft accusations

The convulsive symptoms that can be a result of consuming ergot-tainted rye have also been said to be the cause of accusations of bewitchment that spurred the Salem witch trials. This medical explanation for the theory of “bewitchment” is one first propounded by Linnda R. Caporael in 1976 in an article in Science. In her article, Caporael argues that the convulsive symptoms, such as crawling sensations in the skin, tingling in the fingers, vertigo, tinnitus aurium, headaches, disturbances in sensation, hallucination, painful muscular contractions, vomiting, and diarrhea, as well as psychological symptoms, such as mania, melancholia, psychosis, and delirium, were all symptoms reported in the Salem witchcraft records. Caporael also states there was an abundance of rye in the region as well as climate conditions that could support the tainting of rye.[13] In 1982, historian Mary Matossian raised Caporael’s theory in an article in American Scientist in which she argued that symptoms of “bewitchment” resemble the ones exhibited in those afflicted with ergot poisoning.[14]

The hypothesis that ergotism could explain cases of bewitchment has been subject to debate and has been criticized by several scholars. Within a year of Caporael’s article, the historians Spanos and Gottlieb argued against the idea in the same journal. In Spanos and Gottlieb’s rebuttal to Caporael’s article, they concluded that there are several flaws in the explanation of ergot poisoning as a cause of conditions associated with cases of alleged bewitchment. For example, they argued that, if the food supply was contaminated, the symptoms would have occurred on a house-by-house basis, not just in particular individuals. Historian Leon Harrier has challenged this theory by claiming that even if supplies were properly cooked, residents suffering from stomach ulcers had a risk of absorbing the toxin through the stomach lining, offering a direct route to the bloodstream. Being similar to Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), the chemical composition of the average human's stomach would be too acidic for the ergot to survive, especially if the food was properly cooked. But, if some residents were malnourished and suffering from bleeding stomach ulcers, there is valid reasoning to say that, while most of the residents would not be affected by ingesting contaminated grains, a small percentage could have become affected, offering an explanation for why ergotism was never initially recognized. Harrier has even argued that the numbers could have been larger, possibly even the entire town, but, due to the trials on bewitchment and heresy, and the fear of being accused and subsequently executed, few could come forward while suffering from legitimate medical conditions. Spanos and Gottlieb also state that ergot poisoning has additional symptoms not associated with the events in Salem and that the proportion of children afflicted were less than in a typical ergotism epidemic.[15] The anthropologist H. Sidky noted that ergotism had existed for centuries before the Salem witch trials, and argued that its symptoms would have been recognizable during the time of the Salem witch trials.[16]

More recently, it has been pointed out that ergots produced by different strains of Claviceps purpurea, and those growing in different soils, may have expressed different ergot alkaloid compositions. This may explain the different manifestations of ergotism in different outbreaks. For example, an alkaloid, present in high concentrations in ergots from Europe east of the Rhine, may historically have caused convulsive ergotism, while to the west it caused epidemics of gangrenous ergotism.[17]

NOTE 7, Section 5

The causal body, the fruit of former lives lived by the individual upon earth, has been painted by Bosch as a ball on the end of the string of life; the idea may have been taken from the fruit of a tree, tabernaemontana alternifolia. Figure III from Plants of the Bible [41] shows this tree, which was regarded by the Portuguese on the island of Ceylon as the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. It bears fruits which resemble an apple that has had a bite taken out of it; these fruits are much larger than those of plane-trees which of course also hang by a thread.

It remains an open question whether a drawing of this tree was known to Bosch; at least it becomes evident that essentially nothing can be depicted that has not ultimately been taken from nature, even if the combination of such things seems to the beholder to be somewhat strange in relation to their usual appearance on earth, as is the case with the paintings of Bosch.

NOTE 8, Section 6

Illustration from the Tabula Smaragdina

Figure 112 shows how the presentation of an idea stemming from the alchemists can be akin to a painting. It comes from the Tabula Smaragdina. This schematic representation, handed down in an etching, has been chosen because the hart appears here in the form and stance and with the same symbolic meaning as on the right inner wing of The Hay Wain tryptich by Jeroen [iii] Bosch (see Fig. 113 & ref. 65, p. 53) and on the1eft inner wing of the Lisbon altar [iv] (see Fig. 114).

Fig. 111. DIVI LADNER: Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. From Plants of the Bible [41]. By kind permission of St. Martin's Press, New York.

Fig. 112. MATTHAUS MERIAN. Symbolic representation with the text of the Tabula Smaragdina. Etching 1698. Published by permission of Philosophical Research Society, L.A. California, U.S.A. From "The Secret Teachings of all Ages", by Manley P. Hall.

Fig. 113. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Hart on the right inner wing of The Hay Wain Triptych. Madrid, Prado Museum.


Fig. 114. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Hart on the lift inner wing of The Temptations of St. Anthony.


The hart appears in Bosch's pictures in two different postures: one is that in which he stands naturally on his four feet: in the second however he is erect on his hind legs, a humanised attitude that points to a supersensible meaning. The first posture expresses that the soul has united itself completely with the (gravity-laden earthly) body, although it can direct itself upwards as well as downwards. If a looser union between soul and body is to be represented however, Bosch paints the hart in the attitude of a man, who can stand with his head in the heavens, and his feet upon the earth, as is shown in this picture from the Tabula Smaragdina (Fig. 112).

In either case the hart expresses the union of man's soul and body, while the unbound soul which is free, is regarded as a more bird-like creature, because in nature the birds are much less bound to the earth and can remain suspended in the air. The erect stag represents a stage between two situations, which is also indicated by the symbol of the chicken. The chicken, that is discussed in section 37, is a bird but it is unable to fly, as the soul can in the supersensible realm when it is free from its body. This etching of the Tabula Smaragdina is a far cry from what we understand by painting; yet it is more closely related to art than e.g. most of the drawings that occur in Mutus Liber, or Secret Signs of the Rosicrucians, [22] etc.

In order now to demonstrate the relationship between the art of Bosch the painter, and the significance of an illustration from the Ars Chymia, we must formulate an explanation, albeit an incomplete one, of the main ideas that can be found in this picture which was designed for study.

The main figure in the foreground represents the sage, the master alchemist, who searches for the connection between the spirit and matter both in and around himself. He understands that much of the original physiological organisation of man before the Fall is still present as described in the oldest text of Genesis by Moses. There it says that man was both male and female (Genesis 1/27) i.e. that in the man of Paradise who did not as yet inhabit a physical body, there had not been any division of the sexes.

The conviction that man still unites within himself a male and a female aspect of being is symbolised here, for to the left of the picture there is shown the "man in man", on the right "the woman in man". Both however share the rhythms of life, as is shown by the two lions with only one common head, drawn beneath the alchemist in the centre. The rhythms of breathing and the circulation are represented by the lion symbol, the common head indicates that we are dealing here with only one being, with the lower and higher parts of man on earth. It is the lower part that is split into diverse sexes.

On the left the naked human male figure represents the human body as it was before the Fall, and also his ego. The Phoenix, which is designated by its title, contains the concept that a human being, an ego, lives in a physical form and, when the appropriate time comes, can arise from the ashes of its body to reappear rejuvenated. The Phoenix is holding two earth spheres under its wings, i.e. the representations of only two elements of the earth. The element of light or air is connected with the astral world, the world of the stars; the element of fire or warmth with the ego-organisation of man [51]. Both the elements of fire and air, as they were always called in the language of the alchemists, belong to the masculine principle of the human being; they represent the active creative forces of the soul and spirit.

The heraldic lion opposite the masculine figure (the sun appears between them) represents the heart in the rhythmic organism of man, the lion's heart, that is also necessary for the courage of spiritual cognition, and to which we can appeal as the sun in man, that is able to warm and illuminate everything. The lion as well as the man are standing on a star with seven points because all that was connected with the planets was conceived as being sevenfold. The left hand of the man is bound by a chain that leads through the sign of the raven to the name of the Father God above; the significance of the raven will be shown later.

The feminine figure on the right side represents the forces of life and growth in the body. The explanation is as on the left, for here we find aquila (designated by the written name), which is the symbol characterising the soul that can strive toward ever higher regions, but is still bound to the physical growing aspect of natural man.

This eagle has under his wings two other elements of the earth: water, and earth. Here too there are drawn two earth spheres, which indicate the realms of life, of water, (the waterman on the left), and the solid region of the earth: the soul that is living on the earth needs these two elements or conditions of the earthly realm for its existence in physical form. Just as the courage for higher knowledge, the heraldic lion in man, belongs to the Sun, so that faculty of the soul that enables one to be at home in two worlds belongs to the Moon. For this reason this feminine quality of man is able to move over the lovely blossoming earth's surface and all that grows and lives there, with mercurial agility, and also to waft into higher spheres, an ability that is symbolised by the psychopompos, the hart. For this reason we find here the moon between the female figure and the psychopompos. The moon is ultimately connected with all feminine aspects of life. It cannot be surprising therefore that a garment of stars hangs from the woman's shoulders, and that she is drawn in graceful pose, nor that the hart (the symbol of the soul that is bound to the body), bears twelve stars in his antlers. The soul comes to earth beneath one of the twelve Signs of the Zodiac, passes through all of them, and has brought with it something from each of them. The erect hart is holding a cloverleaf in his left hand. This means that the soul has brought with it the stamp of that trinity that comes to expression in thinking feeling and will, in the regions of the head, the chest, and the limbs.

Like the man, the woman is connected with the sign of God the Father but by the right hand. The alchemist, who is standing at the centre in the pose of one meditating, is surrounded by a garden, similar to those in which the Virgin Mary is often shown. This vegetative sphere, which can also be called the etheric thought world, shows as does his pose, that he is sunk in thought; the planetary signs in the trees show the influences that are working upon him.

Only the upper half of the sun fire is drawn as the natural sun; within this there are two other sun-forms, together they are called the triple sun in the language of the Rosicrucians. The sphere that it encloses contains the name of the Father God; to the left there is the Lamb, as the emblem of the Son; to the right the Dove, as the emblem of the Holy Spirit; between these there are the various groups of the angelic hierarchies. This realm is very obviously separated from the lower half of the sphere in which the fixed stars and the seven planets are shown at the lower edge, surrounded by a circle of clouds. A series of animal symbols leads inwards. They are connected with the history of the development of the soul of man. These must not be taken as in any definite order or sequence. They appear simultaneously, and in confusion.

They can be explained as follows:

Raven/Saturn/Lead: This represents powers of supersensible wisdom that have become darkened and must be reconquered.
Swan/Jupiter/Tin: The purified soul of man that quietly mirrors itself in the ocean of the spirit.
Winged Lion or Cockerel/Mars/Iron: The symbol of courage and bravery, and the resolve to find spiritual knowledge.
Pelican/Venus/Copper: The symbol of readiness for self-sacrifice, that gives what has been attained to those who have been left behind.
Phoenix/Mercury: The ancient symbol of resurrection, the secret of death and coming to life.

The twelve keys of Basilius Valentinus are but scantily reproduced in this etching, therefore their explanation is necessarily sketchy and aphoristic, because the animal symbols probably derive from traditions that were ancient already in his time. The lines that lead from the man and the woman to these symbols now become clearer: That from the man is directed towards the area between the raven and the swan, that from the woman towards the area that lies between the self-sacrificing quality of the pelican, and the highest form of love. The two poles become one in the realm of God the Father, where the lines meet.

The interior of the upper and the lower circles contains the zodiacal signs above and below the signs of the planets, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Venus and Mercury. In the middle there is the Divine Triangle with the sign of Mercury and much else that would take us far beyond the present terms of reference.

It need scarcely be said that this picture, which has been taken from the Tabula Smaragdina Hermetis, contains a multitude of ideas and presents a whole world philosophy in the form of symbols. Chinese, Tibetans, and other oriental people have also painted such tablets for the purpose of spiritual teaching, but theirs are fashioned more artistically than the Europeans were able to create them at that time. It can easily be imagined that there might have been a longing in some individual, for instance Jacob von Almaengien, who knew the Eastern didactic representations, to commission a painter such as Bosch to paint The Hay Wain or The Hortus Deliciarum [v], but in the sense of the Christians who were dedicated to St. John, so that in one act a work of art could be created as well as a picture from which people could be taught. The present work, The Temptations of St. Anthony seems to us to have been created by Bosch for another reason.

Jurgis Baltrusaitis, in his book Le Moyen Age Fantastique [4], has clearly demonstrated the oriental influence on art in the Middle Ages, and also in the paintings of Bosch; he did not discuss the world philosophy which underlies this, as he was only interested in questions of artistic style. For details of the exoteric prehistory and history of the Tabula the reader is referred to Holmyard [31]. This writer found a ninth century text from Jabir (another was also found by Ruska about 1923,) which is ascribed to Apollonius of Tyana, and he mentions that a Latin translation was generally well known throughout Europe in the Middle Ages. Much about the esoteric background of the alchemists will be found in a book by Beckh [7]. Here the most profound truths are discussed in a clear precise and spiritual- scientific way, which enables the reader to learn to distinguish what is pure from the impure in Alchemy. The real alchemists themselves always emphasise the connection between their chymical mysteries and the Christ Mysteries, between the philosopher's stone and the stone described by Christ as "the head of the corner" (Luke 20, 17). Thus Angelus Silesius:

Thy stone oh chymist is naught;
that corner stone I mean,
is my golden tincture
is the stone of all the wise."

NOTE 9, Section 11 and 30

In ref. 65 it was shown that the toad is a symbol for the fact that while he is on the earth a human being is a sexual creature. Several examples have been given. Here are just two illustrations which demonstrate that in the time of Bosch the toad often appeared as the symbol of sexuality. (Fig.115 and Fig. 116.) The toad is found in the position of the sexual organs. Other examples can be found on graves at Marburg (Germany), in Wels and Salzburg (Austria), etc.

Fig. 115. MATHIS NEITHAT called "GRUNEWALD", 1455-1528 Les amants Trepasses. The toad as the symbol of sexuality. A painting which was completed about 1470. Strasbourg Musee de l'Oevre, Notre·Dame.

Fig. 116. Master I. A. VAN ZWOLLE "Memento Mori".

NOTE 10, Section 16, The Porcupine

Like the Garter, or band of dedication (see The Prodigal Son) the porcupine was also used by a royal house as the emblem of an Order. In 1394 Louis de France, Duke of Orleans, instituted an Order to celebrate the birth of his son, it was called L'Ordre du Pore-Epic. Fig. 117 shows the remains of two emblematic porcupines that can still be seen in Dijon, another is at Blois, France. Members of the Order wore a ring bearing an agate carved with a porcupine. In 1407 Louis de France was murdered, most probably because his ideas did not fit in with those of the Church in his day, and so his Order was gradually forgotten. It could well have been an answer from France to the establishment of the Order of the Garter by Edward III in England (1350). In both countries therefore, an esoteric symbol was used for exoteric purposes, yet at their beginning both these Orders still had the stamp and the glow of the spiritual meaning that was originally theirs. This meaning has often been misunderstood. In Collins [18] Chapter IV we find that the hedgehog typifies evil, and a few lines further one reference is made to Fig. 118. As a contradiction to this it is also said that the hedgehog is shown eating the grapes of a common vine; three dogs are baying at him to frighten him off. The hedgehog seems to be quite imperturbable, because he is aware that he is able to resist one or all three of the dogs together. Here Collins is quite correct, and we can now understand why the initiate has no cause to be afraid of "dogs" while he is eating of the fruit of the "true vine". However, the hare, the forerunner of the hedgehog has good cause to fear the dogs, as was shown in Sections 24-6 of The Prodigal Son. This comment from Collins shows that many interesting indications can be found in works such as his Symbolism of Animals and Birds even when awareness of the true content of the pictures is clouded by conventional prejudice.

Fig. 117. Stone carved porcupines. From about the time of Louis XII (1478-1515), King of France. Dijon, Musee Archeologique.

Fig. 118. Hedgehog and dogs. Childrey, Berkshire, England [vi] A. H. Collins [18].

In the "Grootwoordenboek van Zinnebeelden of Beeldspraek d.d. 1750" [45] the following is written about the hedgehog: "In Pollux, under the word 'hedgehog' one finds mention of a certain box or container, within which the reports of witnesses delivered before the Law were sealed up. These boxes were made of copper or stone-ware, and as Pierius Valerianus believes he knows from Aristophanes (explained in Vesap about 1427), they were in the form of a hedgehog or porcupine, to show by their very shape that it was forbidden to touch their contents without official authorisation; illegal handling of their content was stringently punished, as it should be plain to all from the very form of the boxes that they contained holy or secret objects."

It can be deduced from the writings of Demosthenes (Olympiod sub fin) that not only legal matters but also other secret things were kept safe in such a "hedgehog". "A hedgehog, or iron porcupine needs no borrowed weapons to protect its life, it attacks no-one, it only draws itself together and in this manner defends itself". It is clear that this refers to a sanctuary or shrine of the Mysteries; the surprising thing is that merely the form of a hedgehog or porcupine sufficed to suggest inviolability.

We might expect that Roemer Visscher would not have failed to mention the hedgehog as a typical Rosicrucian symbol in his book Sinnepoppen [63]. And indeed we find in book II No. XXV a small picture (Fig. 119) with a superscription something like the following, freely translated: "Layoff him."

Laet legghen dat hachjen.
Fig. 119. Hedgehog and dogs from Sinnepoppen by ROEMER VISSCHER [63]. Book II No. 25.

"One who is truly brave cannot be moved, even if he is attacked by many enemies. He spreads out his barbs and cannot be overcome if he remains like that; just as the hedgehog between two dogs is protected by his barbs, thus he too cannot be vanquished".

Maarten de Vos (1532-1603) who is spiritually related to Bosch, even painted the porcupine by the figure of Jehovah in his picture of the expulsion from Paradise. (See Fig. 120.) It must also be remembered here that any symbol, like a coin, has two sides; the one that is turned towards the earth, and the spiritual one. For the hedgehog that side that is turned towards the earth takes the form of avarice, or greed, which would fain possess all that exists. This same characteristic transposed into the spiritual realm produces the initiate, with all-encompassing knowledge, and the desire to give this to as many others as possible. The same two-sidedness goes for the hare, which will be discussed below. (Note 14.)

Fig. 120. JOH SADELER. Etching after Marten (Maarten) de Vos.

NOTE 11 Section 17

The works of Bosch and many other painters of his time are full of plants, fruits and flowers used as symbols, and this also offers a vast area for further research. Many art historians have already collected interesting material on the language of flowers in general, e.g. Elizabeth Wolffhart [66], but despite this the specific meaning for the symbolism of the Rosicrucians and the alchemists of the 15-16th centuries has so far not been explored. As we have recognised in Bosch a true painter of the Rosicrucians, and his language in this sense can be considered to be standard, we hope that other students will find it possible to immerse themselves thoroughly in the study of this aspect, starting from the material offered here.

Bock, in his book Urchristentum II [12] indicates one way in which the long-lost source of the original secret language of plants could be re-discovered. On page 101, where he calls Nazareth the town of the offspring of the root of Jesse, and mentions the leading Essenes, he writes:

"It has been handed down to us that everywhere among the Essenes there were seers, who were consulted over important decisions of life. It is therefore probable that particularly through the advice of such seers, men and women were brought together for marriage. At the beginning of the 19th century the visionary Sister Katharina Emmerich [23], a nun, in her descriptions of the Life of the Virgin Mary gave a picture of how, among the Essenes, supersensible directives might have been sought and used for the union in marriage of individuals and the propagation of certain families." Something of what is described there might well contain actual historical facts. For example, the story that the seers who were to advise the people told them to sow certain seeds and then observed the growth of the germinating plants, in order to read from this the answers to their questions; one would have to admit that it really could have been like that. Plant-oracles, such as the gardens of Adonis, were common in connection with various cults of the ancient world. Plato's Phaedrus mentions that Socrates spoke of them. The significance of plants in cults is also indicated by Lurker [37] [vii]. He says: "In Gothic art the symbolic language of plants becomes particularly prominent". Konrad von Wurzburg in his Golden Smithy, wrote down poetic comparisons between the Virgin Mary and the various plants. He sings of Mary as the flowering lily, or as the beautiful blood of the almond tree. Healing herbs constantly appear in Gothic painting, and we can also understand why Konrad von Wurzburg designates the Virgin Mary as the blessed apothecary; after all her Son was the Saviour, the Divine Healer (Iatros). In the picture of Mary with Saints and Donors by the Master of the Life of Mary, the whole of the ground is covered by a carpet composed entirely of healing herbs etc."

Lurker continues on page 17: "In old times the flowers symbolized the gods of spring and vegetation, and the mother goddesses. Legend tells of Adonis that while hunting he was killed by a boar, whereupon Aphrodite caused a flower, the anemone, to arise from his red blood. The gardens of Adonis (keptoi Adonidos) were grown as the symbol of growth and decay; these consisted of flowerpots or baskets, into which quick-growing and quick-dying plants were sown before the feast of Adonis. Isaiah [vii] sharply denounced the cult of Adonis in his prophecy about Damascus." [viii]

The probable explanation for this denunciation by Isaiah is that at that time the etheric spiritual experience was no longer relevant as the physical incarnation of the Christ-Being was in preparation.

Much aphoristic material is given by Lurker on this subject of the symbolism of plants, however he seems to omit all those that are particularly relevant to the secret language of the Rosicrucians and Alchemists and so obviously important to them, as e.g. poppy, carnation, strawberry, cherry, etc. [65]. It must always he remembered that a living symbol, like the living word, although taken from an essential reality, is constantly subject to slight changes due to the effects of time and modifications of language, and that a dictionary of symbols that would be valid for all people and all times is among the impossibilities of life.

For this reason the meaning of a symbol can never he regarded as fixed for ever. Those who were able out of their own powers of insight to recognise pictorial images and who did not use them dogmatically, created symbols that other men can discover, because these pictorial images have been read in the spiritual world, and can he tested there by others.

NOTE 12 Section 18

[27] Faust part II, 2nd Act, Laboratory scene (Homunculus, Wagner, Mephistopheles).

Mephistopheles: [ix]

No more. That privilege I gladly waive, of hearing about tyrant versus slave.
Those struggles bore me: scarce is riot done.
When lo, the blockheads start another one.
And none can see he is the dupe and game
Of Asmodeus [x], who inspires the flame.
They fight, they say, dear freedom's cause to save;
But, seen more clearly, slave is fighting slave.

NOTE 13 Section 19

Several details in the yearbook of the Swedish Nautical Museum of 1942 [32] sufficiently support our hypothesis that at the beginning of the Renaissance all technical skills, also those in the realm of sailing, took a new direction.
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Fig. 121. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: X-ray picture of the signature on the right inner wing if The Temptations of St. Anthony.

Fig. 122. Hare-Peru. The Aztecs like the Indians and Chinese, saw the Hare in the moon. According to the experts of the Museo National, Mexico City, this illustration has come from the Borgia Codex.

Fig. 123. Sicilian coin. If the hare stands erect the dolphin appears "upside down", so that the hare (ego-principle) and the dolphin (principle of growth) alternately stand "erect".

Fig. 124. 10 Drachma coin. Akragas. The soul as the picture of the eagle is shown, which can raise itself high into the air, but also raises its prey from the ground. It appears twice; the mood of soul which is directed downwards, shown in the eagle with downbent beak, has a destructive effect, like the locust. That soul which is turned upwards, shown in the picture of the other eagle, takes the hare-lepus-the Ars Chymia-upwards with itself. This hare is the symbol of the ego-strength of the spirit which can transmute all. In this hare we should not see prey that has been seized.

Fig. 125. Hare [xi] Asia. In the far East too the hare represented the image of the ego of man who, in the spiritual world (shown through symbolic clouds) formed his own elixir of life from the general etheric world (the tree of life).

Fig 126. Hare (the ego) hidden in a tree-trunk -- the picture for the living physical body. A Chinese netsuke owned by the author.

Fig. 127. Hare attacked by an eagle (Chinese netsuke). Here the eagle represents the lower soul-forces which darken the ego; in other words a darkening mood of soul overcomes the strength of the ego. Owned by the author.

NOTE 14, Section 21, The Hare

In true symbolism, wherever a mammal is represented, it points to an activity of the human physical body. The hare represents man's ego-activity in the physical body. It is found everywhere as an emblem from the far east to the remotest west, in the north and the south; there is even a constellation called "Lepus" in the southern hemisphere which was already known to the ancient Greeks. The Buddha in the moon was experienced as a hare; the hare appears in Peru (Fig. 122) and on coins from areas under Greek influence (Fig. 123 and Fig. 124), also in Chinese art (Fig. 125, Fig. 126, Fig. 127). Fairy tales of many lands tell of the hare in old and new languages, illuminating various aspects of his influence, but always the same undercurrent of meaning can be detected: a supersensible being is striving to manifest as thoroughly as possible in physical form on earth, while the good astral forces are helping and evil astral forces are working to hinder this effort. Lurker [37] writes as follows (p. 92) "In the fairy tales of China the hare is a friendly animal: he sits beside the Cassia tree on the moon and prepares the elixir of life in a mortar. On earlier cult garments that belonged to the emperors of China, the moon was depicted with a hare beside a tree on it." (Fig. 125.) So we can see that the hare as the emblem of the ego, and the tree of life, belong to these ancient traditions, and that our ideas coincide with insights gained in times long past.

Jung [34] wrote in connection with all that he included under the term archetype "Living in the West, instead of 'self' I should say, Christ, in the Near East possibly Chadir, in the Far East Atman or Tao or Buddha, and in the Far West perhaps 'hare' or 'mondamin', and in cabbalistic language 'Tifereth'.'

Before we go further into the symbol of what is here briefly called "the self" in order to explain its appearance as a hare in Bosch's pictures and those of his contemporaries, we must first consider the question: why should the hare be the representation for the self that is trying to find its way into its human physical organisation? No immediate answer can be expected to this question, but it gradually becomes clear that all the other forms of life that appear in nature must be excluded. The ego of a man living upon the earth exists in the warmth of the blood, so the symbol must be a warm-blooded animal. In the course of life the ego uses up the vital forces, it gnaws at the life-forces, so this creature must be a rodent. So long as the ego has not been taken over by evil forces it is defenceless and harms no-one. Therefore only a vegetarian rodent is suitable. In addition there is ascribed to the hare a trait that further determines the symbol. If a hare is hunted and can go no further, another will take his place in the field. He gives his life for his kind. Further, he has especially sensitive hearing, he is all ear and very alert. It is said of him that the hare sleeps with open eyes, and he imitates the human habit of standing erect. Plutarch says that the Egyptians regarded the speed of the hare and the accuracy of his senses as something divine.

All this makes the hare suitable as a symbol for the ego. The selfless ego harms none, springs into action for its brothers, is homeless as the hare, and is always awake. As the lower ego absorbs the world of sense-perception, so the higher ego absorbs percepts from a higher world. It experiences the higher world in the imagination (the inner picture of truth), and inspiration (the inner word). The ego is always active, brings spiritual vision and hearing, and makes men alert. (Goethe in his tale "The New Paris" calls the wakefulness of the ego "Alerte".)

While the hare is a symbol of the ego which has not quite permeated the physical organisation, the rabbit represents the complete permeation. For the rabbit digs his burrow in the solid ground, while the hare only has a form and does not penetrate into the earth. It can be said that the ego-consciousness penetrates into the very marrow of the bones. Early on, the hare and the rabbit were clearly differentiated, but in later times they were often confused. It was said in the Introduction that the imagination cannot produce anything but images from natural phenomena, it is only at liberty to combine these natural forms. The Greek word "symbol" merely means "rolled together" or "compressed" (symballesthai).

Other rodents that are connected in imagination with darker aspects of the ego can only be mentioned briefly here; e.g. the squirrel is connected with egoism in the sense of the Diabolos (Lucifer) and the rat more with Satan (Ahriman). Mice represent everyday little wickednesses, but it must always be remembered that each picture has a positive aspect too. Zoologically mice are far more prolific than hares; this needs to be said here because the hare is so often regarded merely as a symbol of fertility. This view would be justified if only the earthly side of this symbol were to be taken into account (cf. Note 10, where the physical aspect of the porcupine is mentioned). In the image of the hare the process of creation can be seen on two levels, on the one hand as spiritual creativity, on the other as procreation, which is also a creative activity. Mice, rats and squirrels have long tails; devils too are always depicted with long tails (see Fig. 99.) None of these are vegetarians, they defend themselves with their teeth, and for this alone are unsuitable as emblems of the highest principle in man. If one studies all the rodents in turn only the beaver, the porcupine, the hare and the rabbit can be taken into account. It is known that the beaver is a symbol of the overcoming of sexuality in man, the porcupine has already been discussed, and there only remain the hare and the rabbit which also occur in nature in white coats, are harmless and gentle, only scream if in terror of death, and otherwise behave modestly and quietly.

Now the meaning of the Easter rabbit can become clearer. Many centuries before the Birth of Christ, the awakening of nature in spring was regarded by the people of the north of Europe as the work of the goddess of spring, Ostara (Astarte). She gave the animals and plants new life; the spirit form of all living beings on the earth could gain new life in her domain; these spiritual ego forms were seen as hares which brought the new germs (in other words, the hidden eggs). In later times the feast of Ostara, the rejuvenation of nature, became more or less incorporated into the Christian feast of the Resurrection; it was united with the Resurrection of Christ, and of the heathen goddess Ostara there remained, only her name, Easter, and also her hares which hide the eggs.

On the Munster in Basel the symbol of the hare can be seen in a Christian context, carved in stone (Fig. 128).

Fig. 128. A horn blower who is standing upon a hare (reproduction Peter Heman, Basel). Basel Munster, outer wall.

We have already met the man who blows on a horn in the Prodigal Son (Section 16, Fig. 22, and Fig. 36. Here he is standing on a hare which is feeding from a grape. As grapes do not form the normal diet of hares, this clearly means that the hare, the symbol of the ego, is nourishing itself from the fruit of the true vine (from the Christ), and that the man who has a firm footing on this knowledge is telling the whole world what his ego has received from the Christ. That courage is needed for this can be seen by his club, which expresses his will, and his commitment to what is divine can be recognised in his knotted belt.

Two examples will further illustrate the meaning of the hare: Fig. 129, which can also be found reproduced in Jung (Psychology and Alchemy [34]), shows two men who have not yet penetrated into the temple, i.e. their physical organism. One of them is still totally blind to the spiritual realities about him, i.e., his eyes are still bound; his hare is still straying about, i.e., his ego has not yet taken over the inner direction of himself; the other man has gained vision, we can see his hare, now turned into a rabbit, slipping into the interior of the earth. The rest of the picture makes plain that this interior is the physical body: seen from without it is surrounded by the four elements, earth, water, air and fire: seen from within it is built up through the influences of the Zodiac and the planets. The stair of inner development, which consists of many stages, leads up to the actual sanctuary crowned by the Phoenix. The spherical roof is made of sun, moon and stars. The King (the true ego), and the Queen (the eternal soul), are enthroned in the innermost chamber, which is transparent in all directions, and could also represent a philosopher's stone. As the Phoenix appears high above all, like a flag, a rebirth out of the spirit is indicated here (St. John 3, verse 3) or more explicitly, the Resurrection. This gives a general idea of the content of this picture. Let us now turn to the Rosicrucian picture, taken from the Teachings of the Rosicrucians of the 16th and 17th centuries, entitled Mons Philosophorum, which is reproduced in Fig. 130 [22].

Fig. 129. Mountain of the adepts. Alchemists' picture.

Fig. 130. Mons Philosophourum from "Secret Symbols of the Rosicrucians from the 16th and 17th centuries", or "the innocent ABC for young students who practise daily in the School of the Holy Ghost in the light of nature and theology" [22]. (The book has been reprinted and is again obtainable.)

Here too men can be seen who have not yet been able to penetrate to the temple; a hare is straying about outside, purposeless for the moment, another is already within the temple. In this book we must dispense with further discussion of this picture and can only quote a few lines belonging to the text for this picture:

"On the right can be seen
Lepus, sign of the art Chymia,
Wonderfully white, and in the same sort
There are researches done through the heat of the fire ..."

This says clearly that the hare indicates the art of transforming the human body as it was given to man by nature, and that the white hare and its way of working can be recognised in the intensity, the heat-force, of the ego. In other words, the human spirit can alter his earthly sheaths if his hare begins to work his special alchemy to combine spirit and matter in his own way; a new creative process. Creuzer [20] found painted on a Greek vase the figure of "Tragedy, with the hare on her hand", fortunately this name was on it in the language of ancient Greece (see Fig. 131). Tragedy without human self-consciousness is unthinkable, for tragedy only begins when the ego wills something that conflicts with the natural instincts and passions, so that tensions arise within the soul. In section 16 of the Prodigal Son where the bandage of dedication was discussed, reference was made to a picture from Creuzer's [20] book. It is appropriate to reproduce this picture here, as the hare also appears on it, together with bandage (Fig. 132). The meaning of this picture, which Creuzer entitled Liber and Libera, appears to us as follows: a virgin can unite with a man in two different ways. She can unite herself either with a satyr, or with a demi-god. From union with the faunlike creature, who is offering her an egg, an orgiastic organism would develop. The symbol for an orgasm can be seen drawn under the ground where the Panhuman is standing. The virgin however chooses to unite herself with the demi-god, towards whom she has turned. Underneath them both, in the ground, the hare is prepared and ready: this signifies that an ego-bearer, a human being, will result from this copulation. The hare bears this meaning not only in Greece, but also in Asia Minor (see Fig. 133). On this picture the lower half of the human being is indicated as a collection of small balls, which in coptic writings signify salt, or precipitated matter. If we regard them as large grains of sand, their symbolic weight becomes plain: man bears within him earthly matter as his lowest element or region. Upon his tall hat, which is shaped like a boat, there are perched the sun (etheric forces), and moon (astral forces). But a man who possesses a body, life, and the ability for both physical and inner soul movement, also possesses an ego. Hence the alert hare appears as if of itself, upon his hand.

Fig. 131. Tragedia with a white hare and the Thyrsus rod on a Greek vase, from F. CREUZER [20].

Fig. 132. Liber and Libera from F. CREUZER [20] (Plate VM).

Fig. 133. Probably the seal of a Hittite priest-king.

So great is the force of this imagination that we have been discussing, that even today magicians on the stage conjure forth white rabbits from their hats. Such a genuine compression of spiritual ideas, as the symbol of the hare or rabbit, has proved so powerful that it can even survive our materialistic age! Does it not say in Proverbs, 30/26, [xii] "The conies are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks:" this proverb can lead to the insight that when the ego has so far permeated the physical organisation that it meets with the bones, the consciousness-soul will arise: when however the ego penetrates yet further, and has entered the very marrow, the possibility arises that the individual can become conscious not only of himself, but also of the spiritual world that surrounds him. Thus the metamorphosis of the hare into the rabbit which makes his house in the rock becomes more comprehensible.

In the church at Dorlisheim, Alsace, a sea-hare has been carved in the stone (Fig. 134). A fairytale of the Rosicrucians tells of this hare (Grimm No. 191 [28]). Other fairytales gathered by the brothers Grimm, cf. Nos. 187, The Hare and the Hedgehog, and No. 66 The Hare's Bride, also show different aspects of the ego.

Fig. 134. The sea-hare. Capital in the church of Dorlisheim (Alsace). It is an imaginative picture of the ego which is still partially living in the soul world (the water) i.e. has not yet become terrestrial.

On an outer wall of the cathedral at Amiens there is a figure of a knight, who suddenly has become aware of his hare, his true identity. He drops his weapons and becomes a worshipper. Jurgis Baltrusaitis also mentions this picture [4] and reproduces it as Fig. 40 page 94 in his book. Baltrusaitis also demolished the recurrent misconception that the three hares at Paderborn (see Fig. 137) represent the Trinity (see Fig. 135). He shows a Chinese picture of three hares dating from the 10th century (Toueng-huoang, page 136 op. cit). However in later times the three hares can be found on drinking vessels, bowls, keys etc.: their deeper meaning had been forgotten.

Fig. 135. Hares. See ref. 4.

"A rose is a rose is a rose is a rose"

And when she saw it was she who said what it was she had seen she was filled with a feeling.
A feeling a rose within her when she saw what it was she had seen.
What she had seen was a rose and what she felt was a feeling.
And when she saw what it was she was feeling she was filled with sadness.
What she had seen was a rose and what she had felt was a feeling.
A rose and her feelings for a rose.

-- Gertrude Stein, "Waiting for the Moon," directed by Jill Godmilow

Fig. 136. Madonna with the Hare. Tungental.

Fig. 137. Hares. Symbolic language in the cathedral of Paderborn. The collaboration of three human individualities.

In Tungental there was a statue of Mary with a hare at her feet; unfortunately the image was lost during the second World War (see Fig. 136). In the Munster at Freiburg there stands a wooden statue of Mary with the child Jesus (1515); not only is there a white rabbit at her feet, but in the background we can distinguish two goldfinches on a cross surrounded by roses. The emblem of the Rosicrucians is presented in a disguised form (see Fig. 138). In the art of the 14th and 15th centuries many hare and rabbit symbols can be found that have been properly understood and used; with the onset of the 16th century this deeper understanding was gradually lost, and only here and there is the symbol used correctly, as by Titian (1480-1576) (see Fig. 139). This also applies to painting by Santa Groce (1455-1508) Giovanni di Paola (1403-1483), Hans Leu (1490-1531), Hans Baldung Grien (1485-1545) and Johannes Holbein (his Well of Life 1519, in Lisbon) to name but a few. A very early picture which is reproduced in Janson [45] and which appears in the Moralia in Job, Citeaux, 12th century, is very illuminating on the significance of the hare (see Fig. 140). It could be entitled "The Initiation".

Fig. 138. White rabbit with Mary and the Jesus Child. The Munster Freiburg 1515, also a cross with roses and two goldfinches (see text).

Fig. 139. TITIAN. Mary with the Jesus Child. Paris, Musee du Louvre.

Fig. 140. The Initiation [xiii]. Quoted in "Apes and ape-lore". H. W. JANSON [33] Natural man, who still bears an ape-like creature on (in) his head, as a sign that the ape still dwells in his imaginative life, is initiated by a "great" initiate. The ape must vanish, the white hare is leaping towards him. By kind permission of the conservateur Bibliotheque Publique de Dijon.

Finally we should like to discuss a picture by the Master with the Carnation of Baden, which is to be found in Dijon (see plate M) and another that is less well known. The picture in Dijon shows the Visitation the meeting of Mary and Elizabeth, the future mothers of Jesus and John the Baptist. It is important for our study because the symbols that were also used by Jeroen [xiv] Bosch are used here in exactly the same way. The two white hares tell clearly that here two extraordinarily pure and highly developed egos are striving towards incarnation; on the mothers' other side harts are painted, signs that a transition into another world is taking place -- the dwelling place of the soul is to be changed. The symbol of the boat, which we have already seen on the Hittite seal (Fig. 133), and which Bosch painted on the right next to Saturn on the central panel of The Garden of Heavenly Delights, is also to be found here, floating in the water, beside both Mary and Elizabeth, and here too it signifies the living body. The duck, the symbol of education that has here been inspired by the Holy Spirit, which is handed on from parents to children, is near Mary: this event will continue to be taught to future generations. The two towers in the backgrounds of both the women have the same symbolic value as the tower on the right inner wing of The Hay Wain triptych: the form of the physical body, which, at the time of the development of the ego was experienced as a prison, but which also provided the vertical direction. Beside Mary there stands the ibex, as a symbol of that spirituality that can only feel at home in the highest regions.

Plate M. MASTER OF THE CARNATION OF BADEN. The Visitation. Meeting of Mary (L) and Elizabeth (R) Dijon, Musee (Ancien Palais des Ducs de Bourgogne). See Note 14.

Let us now discuss our final example of the use of the following symbols, which can also be found in Bosch; (i) hare, (ii) holy stork, (iii) hart, (iv) reeds (see Fig. 141). Simon Peter, in the centre, and Andrew, on the left, are called by the Christ, as described in Matthew 4/18-20: "And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And He saith unto them, follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. And they straightway left their nets, and followed Him." On the left two hares indicate that the two brothers were already endowed with spiritual vision and hearing; otherwise both would have needed more than the sparse words of Christ to make them follow Him, nor would they have recognised Him. The holy bird, probably here an ibis (above the hares, behind the disciples), represents the sacred mood of soul. The hart is standing between Jesus and the two brothers. From now on their souls will live in two worlds, on the earth and in the spiritual world. Behind the hart (the psychopompos with the nature of Mercury-Gabriel), appear two reed plants, which grow on the shore of the ocean of the spirit (see also Fig. 55, and The Prodigal Son). Bosch uses the symbol of the hare in The Garden of Heavenly Delights on the right and left inner wings, as well as several times on the central panel, and also on the right inner wing of the picture of The Temptations of St. Anthony. As our notes have shown, he is by no means alone in his use of this symbol, nor of the others. Because the symbol of the hare or the rabbit is such an important one it has been exceptionally extensively discussed; it is not possible in the framework of this book to treat every implication and reference equally thoroughly.

Fig. 141. Christ calling upon Simon Peter and Andrew to follow Him. MONTE DI GIOVANNI and his studio. From a psalter Fol. 2 verso. Cod. -- no number Florence. Library of the old convent S. Marco.

NOTE 15, Section 23

The Goldfinch

Even at the beginning of the 20th century the goldfinch was still kept in cages without drink or food. Yet outside the immediate reach of the bird, at the side of the cage and below, was fastened a container with water, into which a thimble was suspended by a thread. The place from which the bird could draw water was in an annexe to the cage in one of the upper sides whence the thread could be reached by the bird. If the clever goldfinch became thirsty he sat in this annexe, grasped the thread in his beak, and drew it towards him. He held the thread in his claws, so that it could not fall back, and continued until the thimble filled with water came within reach of his beak. He held onto the thread until he had slaked his thirst, then let the thimble fall back into the water container. On the other side of the cage a little board with a gutter in the centre was fixed at a slope. Outside, at the end of the board there stood a little wagon with seed and other food. This too was fastened by a thread in another annexe to the cage. If the goldfinch was hungry he pulled this thread with his beak. The gutter in the centre of the board prevented the little wagon from falling off and it travelled towards the bird. The bird had to use beak and claws at least three times to prevent the little wagon from slipping back and to be able to get food from it through a hole in the cage. This undertaking, rather a difficult one for a bird, never miscarried, as people in Holland who watched it for years could bear witness. It is therefore understandable that the goldfinch was also called by illustrative names, among them "drawer of water". This brings him into relationship with the human soul which is stuck in the prison (cage) of the body and can only find spiritual nourishment and the water of life outside its immediate surroundings, and must win these for itself day by day, which requires much practice, patience and deliberation. Small wonder that painters gave the goldfinch to the Jesus child as a symbol.

NOTE 16, Section 23

Georgio Vasari tells that Leonardo da Vinci played the lute for the Duke of Milan about the year 1494, and brought his own instrument. He had made this lute himself; it was made of silver in the form of a horse's skull, to produce music with a sweeter sound.

Whether Bosch or Leonardo was the inventor, or whether both recognised the horse's skull as a symbol of dead fantasy which can be brought back to life through the harmony of the spheres -- whose reflection is music -- must remain an open question.

NOTE 17, Section 25

The ancient symbol of the duck has already been discussed in reference [65] and The Prodigal Son. We would only note here that the tradition persisted, e.g. in Jan Steen. This painter still drew the duck on the shoulder of a schoolmaster (see Fig. 142). Bosch uses this combination in the same sense.

Fig. 142. JAN STEEN: "In Weelde Ziet Toe" (in the midst of plenty beware!). Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Note duck on the shoulder of the schoolmaster.

NOTE 18, Section 25

We have been informed that these spectacles, which at that time were a very expensive item, had been presented to Bosch by the Emperor Maximilian so that the painter should be able from then on to paint more finely and accurately. The enlarging spectacles, with which it becomes possible for the artist to paint minute objects with a marten-hair brush, are supposed to have come from the Beryllium factories of Lombardy.

NOTE 19, Section 25 and section 28

Something about the romantic rediscovery of this painting was published in the Swiss illustrated paper "Die Woche" No. 42 (8-14th Oct. 1956). The Dutch paper "Revue" No. 49 8-12 Dec. 1956 also published an article on it and names Frau H.M. von Seidel as the representative of the owner.

The signature which appears on The Temptations of St. Anthony has already been mentioned in the Introduction in relation to Jacob van Almaengien. In the picture in Zurich (which might well be original apart from the faces and is reproduced in Fig. 143) an X-ray picture also yielded a signature which is here reproduced in Fig. 144 and Fig. 145 as it was published. Fig. 144 should be compared with Fig. 121. In the above article it was said that Mosmans, who is the archivist of the church of St. Jan in s'Hertogenbosch explains the initials I.A.B. as follows:

I = Iheronymus A = Antonissohn B = Bosch

Fig. 143. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The Temptations of St. Anthony. The picture found in Zurich which consists only of the central panel.

Fig. 144. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Signature. X-ray enlargement of the Zurich painting.

Fig. 145. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Signature. See Introduction and Note 19 on the discovery of the Zurich picture.

We do not think that our painter, who never signed himself with his full name Iheronymus Antoniszoon van Aeken had any reason suddenly to do so, with initials that come partly from his full name and partly from his pseudonym. It is far likelier that these initials can be read as follows:

I = Jacob A = Almaengien and B = Bosch

From this idea it also becomes understandable why the A appears in inverted commas which would make no sense if it stood for Antoniszoon. It could also be rightly supposed that the A stands for (van) Aeken.

Double meanings are typical of Bosch. Does it not seem plausible that the painter reserved the excuse that 'it only means his name' for a possible discovery and enquiry from the Inquisition? Then he could always have insisted that Jacob had nothing to do with the signature; he himself was known anyway as the "Painter of Devils" who was not quite right in the head, so that he too would go free [65].

The symbols for the well of life as the source from which the ideas were drawn, and the horned head of an ox as sign for etheric-life, of formative-forces fit in with the meaning now generally familiar to us and tell clearly that the source was "the knowledge of higher worlds [52]".

NOTE 20, taken from Hieronymus Bosch an Introduction to his Occult Symbolism by C. A. Wertheim-Aymes. Page 26, Fig. 16. (Not translated).

Commentary on this picture: (see Fig. 91). A man is attacked by three monsters. His posture shows that he has already lost his balance, his clothing is minimal, i.e., his physical and life bodies are so weak that he can barely manage to cling to life on earth.

The monster on the right in the fool's garment has a pig's head. The Dutch verb "schweinen" (i.e., to give oneself to licentious living) and the expression "Lui varken" (pig or lazybones) can be adduced to make the interpretation that here the measureless abandonment to man's lower nature is represented, which in demonic fashion threatens the ability of the ego to keep to its aim in life. The demon with the pig's head is a picture for the will that has become dedicated to Mephistopheles.

The second aggressive demon immediately beside the pigheaded one has the head of a long-tailed monkey. In the scene in the witch's kitchen in Faust Part I the long-tailed monkeys, under the supervision of the witch, who is a creature of Mephistopheles, are brewing a drink for the striving, seeking Faust. They say in their spell "When you have taken this drink you will see a Helen in every woman". In other words the deep longing of the striving human individual for a single woman is to be lowered to an undiscriminating sexual drive which seeks its pleasure and satisfaction generally in the opposite sex. Thus the figure of the long-tailed monkey generally stands for the shameless exposure of lower feelings and emotions; in this round picture where its mouth is distorted with passion the figure stands for the Luciferic degeneration of man's whole feeling-life. Generally speaking those faces in Bosch's pictures which are intended to express disturbed feelings have a similarity to the faces of the long-tailed monkey. The form of the mouth and the moustache, with its hairs extended like antennae, give away the fact that the soul is seeking outside itself for its content instead of within itself.

The long beak is the first noticeable thing about the third monster in the round picture. It is the beak of the spoonbill. At the time of Bosch this bird was commonly found in the swampy country about s'Hertogenbosch in Biesbosch. The behaviour of this bird, which stalks through the mud on its tall thin legs, gives a telling picture for the highly intellectual individual who likes to keep his distance from the dirt of this evil world. A standing spoonbill appears deeply sunk in thought. Yet suddenly he can fish all sorts of vermin from the mud with his beak. His philosophical calm reveals itself as a hunting posture. Thus an apparently self-sufficient intelligence often turns out to nourish itself on all sorts of strange animals.

To the demon with the spoonbill Bosch has given a suit of armour -- the abstract intellectualist also wears an invisible armour against the world surrounding him. On his head he wears a reversed funnel. Why? A funnel gathers substance flowing into it from above, and leads it into a vessel. Here however the funnel that should gather what comes from the heights is perverted into an instrument for defence, an umbrella against the rain of ideas from heaven. The bat's wings too are meant to show that here there is a perversion of the senses. The bat awakens in the twilight and only becomes active at night. By day while the sun radiates light and warmth the bat is asleep. So with this third animal, the spoonbill, we have here an imaginative picture of the thinking that has become dimmed and rigidified by Ahriman; and appropriately this demon is here reaching for the head of the man, the seat of the organs of thinking.

The second animal which, as a long-tailed monkey symbolises perverted feelings, is trying with its left paw, to claw its way into the heart region, the site of human feeling. On the other hand the first monster with the pig's head, symbol of the mephistophelean will, has grasped the arm of his victim and is trying to dislodge his foot from the ground. Arms and legs however are organic bearers of the will life of man.

Here Bosch has shown in the form of a painting how human thinking has become rigid through the influence of Ahriman, how Lucifer has contaminated his feeling, and how his will has become paralysed through Mephistopheles. The soul functions of thinking, feeling and will which have degenerated since the Fall of Man often appear in Bosch's pictures and always in the same sense [49].

NOTE 21, Section 33

The similarity between the gestures of the dancers on the pillar of the Old Testament in the Lisbon altarpiece [xv] and Grasser's dancing figures can be seen clearly in the reproduction shown here, Fig. 146 and Fig. 147. In the book by Halm [29] and in that of Tietze-Conrad [61] we find that the Moorish (Morris) dance was danced at the Burgundian court during the second half of the 15th century, where Bosch as well as Grasser and Durer could have seen it. Further, the Emperor Maximilian, the patron of Bosch and Durer also gave commissions to Erasmus Grasser. It would seem that the same world philosophy was not unfamiliar to both Grasser and Durer. From Arnold's book Esoterisme de Shakespeare [2] we know that Shakespeare too was familiar with the ideas of the Rosicrucians.

Fig. 146. Statuette by ERASMUS GRASSER. A Morija dancer with the bandage of dedication at his knee. Munich, Munchener Stadtmuseum.

Fig. 147. Statuette by ERASMUS GRASSER. Morija dancer with bandage of dedication over the hips. Munich, Munchener Stadtmuseum.

How can we explain the names "Moris" (Shakespeare) "Morres", "Moresque", "Morisken" and others that are found for these dances, which are wrongly supposed to derive from the word "Moor" or from the Hungarian language? It has already been said that it may be permissible to think of those dances which David performed when the Ark of the Covenant was brought to the Temple Sanctuary on the Mountain of Morija or Moria (I, Chronicles chapter 15, 25-29). Here we refer to the Bijbelsch Handbock en Concordantie, p. 133 (ref. 15) where it says of the Mount of Moria "As the Tabernacle was built upon the Mount of Zion and David controlled the whole Temple ritual and composed many psalms during his 40-year reign, the name Zion has become embedded in the books and language of the Israelites; therefore after the building of the Temple of Solomon the name Zion was transferred to the Temple together with the rituals of the tabernacle, the name Moria fell into disuse and the two hills, united by a bridge, have since then only had the one name."

It is true that there is only a similarity of sound uniting the words Morisque, Morris and Morija, but still it is evident that the Moor's dances were originally connected with dances and dance forms belonging to the rituals of a cult. Leinberger (1480/5-1531/5) (see also ref. 33) and others still show traces of this.



i. Translator's note: for a full discussion of the authenticity of this picture see the museum catalogue.

ii. The Garden of Heavenly Delights.

iii. Hieronymus Bosch.

iv. The Temptations of St. Anthony.

v. The Garden of Heavenly Delights.

vi. Reproduced by permission of the publishers, Pitman Publishing, London.

vii. Translator's note: Isaiah 17/10-11.

viii. By kind permission of the publishers, Valentin Korner, Baden Baden.

ix. By kind permission of Penguin Books Ltd.

x. Asmodeus is the demon of dissent.

xi. By Kind permission of Valentin Koerner G.m.h.H., Baden Baden.

xii. These are given as "rabbits" in the German version.

xiii. Trans note entitled Two Conjurers in library catalogue.

xiv. Hieronymus.

xv. The Temptations of St. Anthony.


Differences in Physical features

There are several differences in the physical features of hares and rabbits that allow us to distinguish between the two.

Hares are generally larger and faster than rabbits.
Hares have longer ears and larger feet than rabbits.
Hares have black markings on their fur.
Rabbits are altricial i.e., they having young that are born blind and hairless. In contrast, hares are generally born with hair and are able to see (precocial). Young hares are therefore able to fend for themselves very quickly after birth.
A young hare is called a leveret and a young rabbit is called a kitten or a bunny.
Hares have very long and strong hind legs, more so than rabbits.
Rabbits and hares both molt and then grow new hair. This happens in both the spring and in the fall. Rabbits' brown summer fur is replaced with fur that is greyer. Hares, especially those living in cold, snowy regions, turn white in the winter.
Hunters say that hare has a much stronger, gamier flavor than rabbit (which actually does taste like a milder version of chicken).
Both rabbits and hares have short tails.

Comparison of Lifestyle and Behavior

Hares have not been domesticated, while rabbits are often kept as house pets.
All rabbits (except the cottontail rabbit) live underground in burrows or warrens, while hares live in simple nests above the ground (as does the cottontail rabbit). Rabbits also have their litters underground. Hares rely on running rather than burrowing for protection.
Rabbits are very social animals; they live in colonies. Male rabbits even fight within a group to become the dominant male. The dominant male rabbit then mates with most of the females in the area. In opposite, hares live most of the time by themselves. They come together in pairs for mating only. There is almost no fighting among hares -- they just pair off.
Rabbits prefer soft stems, grass or vegetables; hares eat more hard food: bark and rind, buds, small twigs and shoots.

-- Hare vs. Rabbit, by
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Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:40 am


We are grateful to Faber and Faber for permission to quote from "the God of the Witches" by Margaret Murray, and to Penguin Ltd. for permission to use lines from Philip Wayne's translation of Goethe's Faust.

The National Museum, Lisbon, has given permission for the full illustration of the Altar-piece, "The Temptations of St. Anthony."

We are deeply grateful to Frau A. Wertheim Aymes-Koome for her permission to publish this translation, her help with the bibliography, and the very generous loan of the plates for the illustrations.

A number of works have changed hands since the original publication of this book.

Museums, galleries, owners and publishers of illustrations are acknowledged in the captions, and we should like here to thank all who so kindly gave generous help in tracing owners, and also for their permission for reproduction in this edition. We have made every possible effort to contact owners and holders of the copyrights. Where our efforts have been unsuccessful or misdirected we extend our apologies for any unwitting infringement, and beg their indulgence.

The following publishers have given permission for quotations from other works:

• Faber and Faber Ltd., from "the God of the Witches" (43)
• Freies Geistesleben, Stuttgart, Die Chymische Hochzeit (1)
• Martinus Nijhoff B.V. S'Gravenhage, Sinnepoppen (63)
• Penguin Ltd., Goethe, Faust, parts I and II, Trans. Philip Wayne (27)
• Pitman Publishing Ltd., London, Fig. 118 (18)
• Urachhaus, Stuttgart. From three books by Emil Bock (11, 12, 13)
• Verlag Valentin Koerner, Baden Baden Books by M. Lurker

The three panels of The Temptations of St. Anthony in colour Plate B are reproduced with kind permission of the Ministerio da Educao Nacionale-Secretaria de Estado da Instrucao e Cultura-Direccao-Geral dos Assuntos Culturais -- Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga -- Lisbon.
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Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:40 am


1 ANDREAE, JOHANN VALENTIN. Die Chymische Hochzeit des Christian Rosenkreuz und Fama Fraternitatis reissued in modern German and edited by Walter Weber, 1957, Stuttgart, Freies Geistesleben.

2 ARNOLD, P. (1955) Esoterisme de Shakespeare, Paris, Mercure de France.

3 BALDSASS, L VON (1943, new ed. 1959) Hieronymus Bosch, Vienna, A. Schroll & Co.

4 BALTRUSAITIS, J. (1955) Le Moyen Age Fantastique, Antiquites et exotismes dans l'art gothique. Collection H. Focillon, Paris, Armand Colin.

5 BAYLEY, H. (1912) The Lost Language of Symbolism, new ed. 1957. London, Benn.

6 BECKH, H. (1924) Der Ursprung im Lichte, Stuttgart, Verlag Urachhaus.

7 BECKH, H. (1942) Vom Geheimnis der Stoffeswelt (Alchemie) Basel, Geering.

8 BENNELL, M. and WYATT, I. (1964). An Introductory Commentary on The Chymical Marriage of Christian Rosencreutz Anno 1459, Michael Press, Hawkwood College, Stroud, England.

9 BUECHLEIN VON BEELS 1957 Nederlandsch Kunsthistorisch Jaarboek.

10 BLANKENBURG, W VON (1943) Heilige und Daemonische Tiere, Leipzig, Koehler und Amelang.

11 BOCK, E. (1949) Urchristentum, I, Caesaren und Apostel, Stuttgart, Urachhaus.

12 BOCK, E. (1949) Urchristentum, II, Kindheit und Jugend Jesu, Stuttgart, Urachhaus.

13 BOCK, E. (1952) Moses und sein Zeitalter, Stuttgart, Urachhaus.

14 BRANDT, P. (1927) Schaffende Arbeit und Bildentle Kunst. Leipzig, Kroener.

15 BREDEE, J. M. Bybelsch Handboek. en Concordantie, Rotterdam, J. M. Bredee.

16 BROUWER, J. (1958) Johanna de Waanzinnige, Amsterdam, Meulenhoff Pocket Ed.

17 The Hours of Catherine of Cleves (? 1435) wife of the Duke of Gelre, Utrecht, New York, Pierpont Morgan Library.

18 COLLINS, A. H. (1913) Symbolism of Animals and Birds, London, Pitman.

19 COMBE, J. (1946) Jheronymus Bosch. Paris Editions Tisne. Trans. Jheronimus Bosch, London, Batsford.

20 CREUZER, F. (1819) Symbolik und Mythologie der Alten Voelker, Leipzig und Darmstadt, Heyer und Leske.

21 CUPERINUS (1551) Die Merkwuerdige Geschichte der Staat von den Bosch in: Die Chronijke van Zeelant, Ed. Hermans (1848) Antwerp, Jan Reygersberch van Cortgene, Bax. Also quoted in Fraenger, see below.

22 Die Geheimen Figuren Der Rosenkreuzer. Die Lehren der Rosenkreuzer aus dem 16ten und 17ten Jahrhundert, oder Einfaltig A B C Buechlein fur junge Schuler. Altona, Joh. David. Eckhardt, Konigl. Dan. privil. Buchdrucker. Re-issued in fascmile, 1919, Berlin, Hermann Barsdorf.

23 KATHARINA VON EMMERICH (1833) Das Marienleben nach den Gesichten der Anna Katharina Emmerick. Ed. G. Theiner-Haffner Innsbruck Marianischer Verlag, 1952.

24 FERGUSON, G. (1955) Signs and Symbols in Christian Art. London, Zwemmer.

25 FRAENGER, W. 1951, Psyche, Vol. 6, Stuttgart, Klett.

26 FROISSART, SIR JOHN, (1803) Chronicles, Ed. Johnes Haford Press.

27 GOETHE, J. W. VON. Faust, Parts I and II (two vols.). Trans. Philip Wayne, London, Penguin (1949) (1959).

28 THE BROTHERS GRIMM, (1948) Fairy Tales. London, Routledge and Kegan Paul.

29 HALM, P. M. (1928) Studien zur Suddeutschen Klassik, Erasmus Grasser, Augsburg Filser.

30 HEYER, K. (1959) Geschichtsimpulse des Rosenkreuzertums. Bodensee, Kressbronn, K. Heyer.

31 HOLMYARD, E. J. (1957) Alchemy. Pelican book No. A. 348. London, Penguin. See pp. 95-98 on the Emerald Tablet.

32 Jahrbuch des Schwedischen Schiffahrts Museum, 1942.

33 JANSON, H. W. (1952) Apes and Ape-Lore, University of London. The Warburg Institute.

34 JUNG E. G. (1952) Psychologie und Alchemie. Zurich, Rascher. Trans. "Psychology and Alchemy", Vol. 12, The Collected Works, Ed. Read, H., Fordham, M., and Adler, G. London, Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1953.

35 HERRADE DE LANDSBERG (1167-95) Hortus Deliciarum, Extrait. Strassbourg, Oberlin, 1945.

36 LANOE-VILLENE, G. (1936) Le Livre des Symboles, Tome 6, Ier partie. Paris, Librairie Generale.

37 LURKER, M. (1958) Symbol Mythos, und Legende in der Kunst, 1st Ed. Baden-Baden, Valentine Koerner.

38 ibid (1960) Der Baum in Glauben und Kunst, unter besonderer Berucksichtigung der Werke des Hieronymus Bosch. Studien zur Deutschen Kunstgeschichte Band 328, Baden-Baden, Valentin Koerner.

39 MAERLANT, J. VAN (1370) Der Natuere Bloeme, Leiden, Universiteitsbibliotheek.

40 MANBACH (1727-36) Gottesdienstpflichten No. 47, 313, 1-6.

41 MOLDENKE, H. N. and A. L. (1952) Plants of the Bible. Waltham, Mass. Chronica Botanica Cy. No. 35, New York, St Martins Press Inc.

42 MOSMANS, J. (1947) Jheronimus Anthonis-zoon van Aken, alias Hieronymus Bosch, zyn Leven en zyn Werk S'Hertogenbosch, G. Mosmans Zoon.

43 MURRAY, M. (1952) The God of the Witches, London, Faber & Faber.

44 POEPPIG, F. (1962) Das Lukas-Evangelium, ein Weg von Buddha zu Christian Rosenkreutz, Vienna, Bettina Woiczik, OHG.

45 POOT, H. K. (1750) Grootwordenboek van Zinnebeelden of Beeldspraek. Holland, Boitet.

46 RAHNER, H. (1966) Griechische Mythen in Christlicher Deutung, Ziirich, Rhein Verlag.

47 READ, J. (1966) Prelude to Chemistry (An Outline of Alchemy) (paperback) London, the MIT Press.

48 REHORST, A. J. (1939) Torrentius, Rotterdam, W. L. and J. Brusse.

49 SCHUETZE, A. (1951) Das Ratsel des Bosen, Stuttgart, Urachhaus.

50 Ibid. (1954) Vom Wesen der Trinitat, Stuttgart, Urachhaus.

51 STEINER, R. (1904) Theosophie. Trans. Theosophy, London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1973.

52 Ibid. (1918) Wie erlangt man Erkenntnisse der hoheren Welten? Dornach Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung 1961. Trans: Knowledge of the Higher Worlds and its Attainment. London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1972.

53 Ibid. (1907) Die Theosophie des Rosenkreuzers, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung, 1962. Trans: The Theosophy of the Rosicrucian, London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1966.

54 Ibid. (1909) Geistige Hierarchien und ihre Wiederspiegelung in der physischen Welt, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Verlag, 1972. Trans: The Spiritual Hierarchies and their Reflection in the Physical World. New York, Anthroposophie Press Inc.

55 Ibid. (1911) Von Jesus zu Christus. Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung 1968. Trans: From Jesus to Christ, London, Rudolf Steiner Press.

56 Ibid. (1911) Das Rosenkreuzerische Christentum, and *Die Mission des Christian Rosenkreuz in: Das Esoterische Christentum und die Geistige Fuhrung der Menschen, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner. Nachlassverwaltung, 1962. *Trans: The Mission of Christian Rosenkreuz, its Character and Purpose, London, Rudolf Steiner Publishing Co. (out of print).

57 STEINER, R. (1911) Die Geistige Fuhrung des Menschen und der Menschheit, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Nachlass-verwaltung, 1962. Trans: The Spiritual Guidance of Man, New York, Anthroposophic Press Inc.

58 Ibid. (1912) Das Leben zwischen Tod und neuer Geburt, im Verhaltnis zu den kosmischen Tatsachen, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung, 1964. Trans: Life between Death and Rebirth in Relation to Cosmic Facts. London, Rudolf Steiner Press, in preparation.

59 Ibid. (1912-1913) Okkulte Untersuchungen uber das Leben zwischen Tod und neuer Geburt, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung, 1970. Trans: Occult Research into the Life between Death and a New Birth. New York, Anthroposophic Press Inc.

60 Ibid. (1923-1924) Die Weltgeschichte, Mysterienstatten des Mittelalters Rosenkreuzertum und modernes Einweihungsprinzip, Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung, 1963. Trans: Rosicrucianism and Modern Initiation, London, Rudolf Steiner Press.

61 TIETZE-CONRAD, E. (1957) Dwarfs and Jesters in Christian Art, London, Phaidon.

62 VETTER, E. (1955) Der Verlorene Sohn, Dusseldorf, Schwann.

63 VISSCHER, ROEMER (1614) Sinnepoppen, Reprinted 1949, Ed. L. Brummel S'Gravenhage, Martinus Nijhoff.

64 DE VORAGINE, JACOBUS, (1230-98) Die goldene Legende der Heiligen, ubertragen von Ernst Jaffe, Leipzig, Julius Bard, 1912. Trans: The Golden Legend, or the Lives of the Saints, London, The Temple Classics, J. M. Dent & Sons.

65 WERTHEIM AYMES, C. A. (1957) Hieronymus Bosch, eine Einfuhrung in seine geheime Symbolik, Berlin, Henssel, and Amsterdam, van Ditmar.

66 WOLFFHART, E. ([954) Beitrage zur Pflanzensymbolik, des Frankfurter Paradies-gartleins, Zeitschr. fur Kunstwissenschaft, 3 sect. 3-4.

67 YATES, F. A. (1972) The Rosicrucian Enlightment, London, Routledge.


68 ALLEN, PAUL M. (ed.): Christian Rosenkreuz Anthology (1970) New York, Rudolf Steiner Publications. (Contains The Chymical Marriage of Christian Rosencreutz.)

69 ABBOT, A. E. (1962) The Number Seven, London, Emerson Press (1963); Encyclopaedia of Numbers: Their Essence and Meaning, London, Emerson Press.

70 ADAMS, GEORGE (1955) The Mysteries of the Rose-Cross, London, New Knowledge Books.

71 STEBBING, LIONEL (1963) The Secrets of Numbers, London, New Knowledge Books.
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Aaron 81
Adonis Cult 104
Ahriman, see Satan
Alchemy/Alchemists 12, 79, 98, 99, 100,
102, 104, 105, 108; esoteric A. 102
Almaengien, Jacob von 13. 38, 63, 69,
Anemone 104
Angel of Death 47
Anglican Church 29
Animal symbols 100
Anthony, Saint 49, 50
Anthony, Temptations of Saint 14, 21, 22,
32, 37, 41, 42, 43, 47-90
Ape 57, 72, 85, 86, 87, 88, 112
Apes and Ape-lore 112
Apolonius of Tyana 101
Apostles, Twelve 54
Apple 74; A. tree 74
Aquinas, Thomas 55
Arabism 55, 86
Archetypal forms and symbols 72
Ariadne 25
Aristocracy 74
Aristotle 12
Ark of the Covenant 117
Arthur, King 29, 30
Ascent to Calvary (Bosch) 39, 40
Assurias 75
Astral (soul forces) 69, 99; good A.
106, bad A. 106, 110
Astrology, true and false 76
Audumla 21


Badger 70, 71 , 75
Bagpipes 51, 57
Baltrasaitis, Jurgis 101, 111
Bandage of initiation 27-32, 34, 35, 54,
63, 96, 110, 1I6
Baptism in Jordan 75
Bat 56, 117
Beacons 64, 65, 66
Bear 57
Beaver 108
Bible, false interpretation of 76
Birds 56, mocking B. 58
Black cap 84
Black Mass, Group of the 78, 79
Blood 60
Bock, Emil 86, 87, 96, 104
Book of Life (Liber Mundi) 13, 47
Bosch, Hieronymus, painted out of
visionary experience 11; a prophet
Bourgeoisie 74
Bread of the Devil 68
Britain 29
Brouwer, John 13
Buddha 67, 68; Hare of B. 106, 107
Bull 23, 25; Apis B. 86


Calf 85
Cardinal's cloak 72
Carnation 105
Cat 37
Catacombs 54
Cathars 20
Catskin 36, 37
Cebes Table 68
Century: First 74; Ninth 29, 101;
Tenth 111; Twelfth 112; Thirteenth
20; Fourteenth 30, 11;
Fifteenth 8, 11, 13, 67, 69, 74, 96,
104, 111, 117; Sixteenth 13, 67, 09,
74, 104, 109, 111; Seventeenth 13,
94, 109; Eighteenth 11; Twentieth
Chagall, Marc 21
Chenonceaux, Castle of 87
Cherry 26, 105
Chicken 89, 90, 98
Christ 19, 35, 42, 47, 48, 49, 53-56,
60, 62, 64, 67, 75, 79, 81, 84, 86, 89,
go, g6, 102, 105, 107, 108, 109, 112;
C. Crowned 43; C. Risen 31, 77,
81, 84, 85, 89; Statue of C. 64
Christian Church 72
Christianity 12, 54, 63, 64, 82, 84;
esoteric C. 11; pseudo C. 55, 77
Christophorus, Saint 22, 31, 32, 57,
Christophorus (Bosch) 75
Cleves, Hours of Catherine of 65
Clement of Alexandria 42
Clover 100
Coal-tit 19
Cock 24
Cockerel 24
Collins, A. H. 103
Consciousness 7, 8, 12, 110
Constellation, Cosmic 89
Copper 101
Cow 21, 25, 34, 51, 74, 88
Crossbill 51, 52
Cruelty 77
Cult-table 77, 78, 81, 82
Cuperinus 13


David, K of Israel 86, 117
Death 65, 88
Demosthenes 103
Dog 25, 44, 78, 80, 81, 103; poodle 43
Dolphin 105
Dominican Order 43, 76
Donkey 6q
Dove 60, 88, 100; soul D. 88, 89
Dragon 66, 67
Drake 72, 93
Duck 40, 42, 4;7, 71, 72, 93, 112, 1I3,
115; D. ship 72, 86
Durer, Albrecht 27, 37, 117


Eagle 100, 105, 106
Easter, origin of name 108; E. bells 58
Edward 111, K. of England 29
Ego 22, 24, 25, 49, 50, 54, 56, 58, 60, 61,
67, 74, 81, 82, 86, 94, 98, 99, 105-110, 112;
lower E. 24; naked E. 43,
111, 112, 116
Egret 42
Egypt, Ancient 8, 21, 72, 86, 107
Embalming 72
Enunerich, Sister Katharina 104
Erasmus 68
Eschenbach, Wolfram von 19
Essenes, Order of 104


Falcon 74
Fall of Man 8, 24, 68, 69, 71, 98, 117
Fama Fraternitatis 13
Fanatics, errors of 87
Faust 49, Goethe's F. 8, 58, 105, 116;
F. Motiv 57, 59
Feeling-soul (astral) 8, 12, 53, 80, 84,
110;j Luciferic F. 116, 117
Fiorentino 69, 70
Fish 54, 56, 58, 59, 69, 72; F. tail 56;
F. ship 72; true F. 56
Flag of the Devil 59
Francis of Assisi, Saint 38, 69
Freemasons 36
Frog 56, 77, 80, 81
Fruits of life 88


Gabriel, Archangel 113
Garden of Heavenly Delights 7, 11, 18, 32
36, 37, 38, 42, 43, 47, 52, 60, 62, 63,
69, 71, 74, 87, 88, 93, 97, 101, 112,
113; the purgatorium, 37, 42, 51,
52, 57, 58, 63, 71, 76, 80, 81
Garter, Order or the 102
Geese 42
Gemini (the Twins) 54
Giotto 38
Goat 35, 70, 81
God the Father 100; G. of the witches
Goes, Hugo van der 21
Goethe 8, 58, 64, 75, 107; G. Faust 43
Gold 80, 82; false G. 82; Golden Calf
Goldfinch 69, 70, 94, 111, 113
Graeco-Roman epoch 8, 14
Grail, Holy 47, 96
Graf, Urs 29, 30, 31
Grape 86, 87, 108
Grasser, Erasmus 14, 86, 116, 117
Grasshopper 82
Greek culture 25
Grunewald 101


Hare 43, 60, 64, 67, 103, 105-113;
metamorphis of the H. 110; sea H.
110, 111; white H. 112
Hart 39, 54, 62, 69, 70, 88, 89, 98, 100,
Hathor 21
Hay Wain (Bosch) 40, 41, 42, 68, 76,
87-90, 98, 100, 104, 112
Hedgehog or porcupine 60, 62, 67,
103, 111
Hell 65
Henry VIII, K. of England 29
Herbs, healing 104
Hermits, Altarpeice of the (Bosch) 60, 61
Heron 22, 51, 55, 56, 69, 72, 74-77
Hierarchies, angelic 100
Hindu religion 21
Holbein 68
Holmyard, E. J. 101
Hoopoe 93
Horse 71; skull of H. 114-
Hound 22, 43, 87; H. of the Lord 76
Hubert, Saint 38


Ibex 112
Ibis 97, 112
Initiates/Initiation 8, 27, 28, 29, 31,
35, 38, 50, 61, 67, 84, 89, 103, 112
Inqusition 7, 13, 14, 42, 43, 76, 77,
Inquisitor 43
Iris 22
Iron 101
Isenman, Gaspard 96
Isis and Osiris 69


Jay 74, 87, 88, 94
Jehovah 85, 103
Jerome, Saint 19
Jesus child 69, 70; St Matthew 60
Johanna (wife of Philip the fair) 14
John the Baptist, Saint go
John, Apocalypse of Saint 76
Judaism 47, 54, 96
Judas 47, 54, 96
Jung, C. G. 107, 109
Jupiter 24, 101


Kingfisher 93
Knights of the Golden Stone 79
Korah the Levite 86


Labyrinth 25
Landsberg, Herrade-de 93
Lamb 22, 85, 86, 100
Last Judgement (Bosch) 35, 82
Lead 101
Legend, The Golden 49, 50, 52, 55, 58, 66,
80, 82, 96
Leo, Pope 54
Leonardo da Vinci 113
Life-forces (etheric) 8, 21, 23, 79, 80,
81, 88, 100, 104, 106, 107, 110; L.
after death 88; lower L. 79
Lighthouse-limekiln 65, 66, 88
Lion 25, 79, 98, 99; winged L. 101
Lizard 59, 89
Lohengrin 24
Lotus, pseudo 68, 69
Louis de France (1394) 102
Lucifer 8, 56, 70, 71, 74, 75, 77, 82, 86,
107, 116, 117
Luciferic, she-devil 57, 89; L. demon
Lurker, M 104
Lute 80
Lynching 77


Maccabeus, Judas 54, 96
Magpie 19, 20
Mahishasura Mardini, Goddess 25, 26
Malchus 47, 49
Marriage at Cana (Bosch) 43, 44
Mars 23, 28, 30, 80, 88, 110; M. boat
69, 72
Mary and Child (Flight into Egypt) 72
Mass, false or black 78, 79, true M. 79
Materialism and the Christ Impulse 72
Maximilian, Emperor 14, 86, I 15, I 17
Mephistopheles 8, 105, 115, 117
Mercury 24, 104, 113
Messiah, the 47, 96
Mice 107
Middle Ages 8, 11, 24, 29, 38, 56, 66,
74, 81, 84, 101
Minotaur 25
Mocking bird 57, 58, 74, 97
Monkey 70, 75, 1I6, 1I7
Moon 24, 80, 100, 106, 110; half moon
as symbol 55; M. mysteries 81
Moria, Mount 117
Morris dancer 117
Moses 85, 86; M. and his Time (Bock)
86; Laws of M. 84
Murray, Margaret 29, 30
Musician's hell 80
Mysticism 84, 85
Mysteries, Christ 102; the old M. 86,
90, 103; temple M. 27


Netherlands 13
Nightjar 51, 56, 77


Octagon 19
Occult superstition 76; O. teaching 8
Odin 21
Order of the Garter 28, 29
Ostara (Astarte) Feast of 108
Owl 19, 71, 78, 80, 81, 85, 86, 93
Ox 85-88


Paradise 71; Expulsion from P. 103
Patinir, Joachim 22
Paul, Saint 35, 64, 90
Pelican 101
Pentagram 35
Peter, Saint 47
Philosophers 74
Phineas the Hunter 87
Phoenix 98, 101, 109
Pig 24, 48, 49, 75, 77, 78, 80, 81, 116,
Pisano, Andrea 29
Planets, Signs of the 101
Plants, Secret language of 104; P.
oracles 104
Playing Boy 60
Playing Jesus Child (Bosch) 74
Plutarch 69
Popes 54, 72, 76
Poppy 105
Porcupine 60, 61, 102, 103, 107;
Order of P. 102
Priestess, black 80, 81
Prodigal Son (Bosch) 9, 11, 17-44, 48,
53, 54, 60, 63, 69, 70, 72, 88, 89, 97,
102, 103, 108, 110, 113, 115
Pumpkin 88, 89
Purgatory 18, 65, 88


Quentin Metsys 12, 27
Rangoon (Burma)
Raphael 68-71
Rabbit 107, 108, 109, 113; White R.
110, 111
Rat 71, 107
Raven 99, 101
Reasoning-soul 8
Reeds or rushes 42, 44, 112, 113
Reincarnation 9, 97
Renaissance 106
Resurrection 101, 109; Feast of the
R. 108
Richard I, K. of England 29
Robin 94
Roman Catholic Church 29
Rosencreutz, Christian 11, 60
Rosencreutz, Chemical Wedding of
Christian 13, 34, 79, 90, 96
Rosicrucians 7, 11, 13, 14, 18, 20,
23, 24, 60, 61, 63, 67, 79, 90, 94,
100, 103, 104, 109, 111, 117; Secret
Signs and Symbols of the R. 98, 105,
108; Teachings of the R. 109


Sage, A 61
Satan (Ahriman) 8, 26, 54, 55, 56, 71,
75, 107, 117; bird of S. 87, 97
Satanic 52, 74, 86
Saturn 24, 101, 112
Scholastics 84, 85
Schoolmaster 72
Scorpion 54, 56; constellation of the S.
Seer 104
Seth Typhon 69
Seven 24
Shark 56
Shakespeare 117
Ship of Fools (Bosch) 25, 26, 27, 37
Shrikes 37, 47, 48, 58, 56, 77, 89, 101
Silesius, Angelus 102
Silver dish 82
Simon of Cyrene 48, 49
Sian, Mount 117
Socrates 74
Solomon, Temple of 84, 1 I7
Soul-birds 41, 51, 93, 94, 97
Soul-consciousness 110
Sow 21, 24
Sparrow 51, 97
Spear 22, 23
Spectacles 72
Spirit, Holy 100, 112
Spoonbill 52, 54
Squirrel 107
Slag 19, 98
Steiner, Rudolf 7, 8, 12, 96 and Bibliography
Stork 72, 88; Holy S. 72, 88
Strawberry 105
Sun 24, 99, 100, 110; S. forces 82
Swan 24, 85, 86, 89, 101
Sword 69, 72
Symbolism, true 11


Tabula Smaragdina 55, 68, 70, 98, 99
TAO 50, 84, 107
Temptations of St Anthony 9, 11, 13, 21,
22, 32 , 37, 41, 43, 47-90, 97, 100,
101, 1I3, 114, 115
Theseus 25
Testament, Old 85
Thinking soul 19, 26, 53, 54, 84, 94;
Ahriman T. 117
Thinking, Feeling and Willing 8, 25,
53, 74, 75, 79, 100, 117
Thistle 74-
Three Kings 73, 74, 75, 86
Three Opposing Forces (Bosch) 75
Thomas, Saint 54
Tiepolo 69, 71
Tin 101
Tit-mice 94
Toad 55, 58, 77, 78, 80, 81, 102
Toadstool 68
Tragedy 109
Tree of Knowledge 69, 97, 98
Tree of Life 38, 41, 44, 80, 81, 106
Turk 55, 86


Velislaw Bible 32
Venus 24, 89, 101
Veronica 48, 49
Vision, Spiritual 11
Visscher, Roemer 20, 23, 94, 103
Voragine, Jacques de 96
Vos, Maarten de 103


Wales, Prince of 30
Water of life 69
Weyden, Roger van der 33
Will-forces 25, 53; Mephistopheles W.
Wisdom, esoteric 13; pseudo W. 84
Witch 31, 69, 72, 73
Wolffhart, Elizabeth 104
Woodpecker 94


Zodiac, Signs of the 23, 34, 54, 60, 71,
76, 100, 101, 109; Z. as a clock 87.
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Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:41 am


1. QUENTIN METSYS (MASSYS), 1465/6-1530: Portrait of a Notary


Fig. 1. QUENTIN METSYS (MASSYS), 1465/6-1530: Portrait of a Notary. Edinburgh, National Gallery of Scotland.

The Prodigal Son


Plate A. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: The Prodigal Son. Rotterdam, Museum Boymans-van Beuningen.

2. Christ at the centre of the four elements


Fig. 2. Christ at the centre of the four elements (i.e. here "In the body of Jesus").

3. The ground plan of Baptisteries


Fig. 3. The ground plan of Baptisteries -- Octagon.



Fig. 4. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: St. Jerome. Ghent, Museum voor Schone Kunsten.

5. HUGO VAN DER GOES, 1440-1482: Detail, Adoration of the Shepherds


Fig. 5. HUGO VAN DER GOES, 1440-1482: Adoration of the Shepherds. Portinari Altar (detail). Florence, Uffizzi Gallery.

6. Nativity, from the small Book of Beels


Fig. 6. Nativity Showing the gate to "the other world" from the small Book of Beels (9).

7. JOACHIM PATINIR: Christophorus


Fig. 7. JOACHIM PATINIR: Christophorus. Joachim Patinir, 1480?-1524, shows evidence in his picture of Christophorus that he was one of the few contemporaries of Bosch who understood something of what Master Bosch was trying to show. The soul house in the tree, the gate, the tree as the vegetative growth forces of the physical body, the holy white egret or heron, the iris, symbol of purity and resurrection, even the hound which has intruded into the mystic area and is persecuting the white lambs, these symbols which are nearly all to be found in Bosch, are also here employed quite correctly. Madrid, Escorial, reproduction authorized by El Patrimonio Nacional.

8. Bulls' heads with the signs of the life-force


Fig. 8. Bull's heads with the signs of the life-force (10).

9. ROEMER VISSCHER: The feast is over


Fig. 9. The feast is over. The sow has run off with the stopcock of the wine cask. This cask is the representation of the container of the vitality of the body. From Sinnepoppen by Roemer Visscher(63).

10. Two old pictures on which the
11. Signs of the Zodiac appear


Figs. 10 and 11. Two old pictures on which the Signs of the Zodiac appear assigned to the various parts of the body on which they were held to have an influence.



A general view of The Prodigal Son. Rotterdam, Museum. Boymans van Beuningen.
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Postby admin » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:44 am

Illustrations, Part 2

12. F. CREUZER: Theseus and the Minotaur 25


Fig. 12. Theseus and the Minotaur. Representation on a Greek vase from "Symbols and Mythology of Ancient Peoples" by CREUZER [20] Plate LV.

13. Cult figure, India, probably 11th century A.D.


Fig. 13. Cult figure, probably 11th century A.D. The Goddess Mahishasura Mardini, Calcutta, Indian Museum, (No. 6314).

14. HIERONYMUS BOSCH: Detail from The Ship of Fools


Fig. 14. HIERONYMUS BOSCH. Detail from The Ship of Fools, Paris, Musee du Louvre.

15. QUENTIN METSYS (MASSYS), 1465/6-1530: Allegory of Folly


Fig. 15. QUENTIN METSYS (also written MASSYS) 1465/6-1530: Allegory of Folly, painted about 1510-1420. New York, Coll. J. Held (Mondeken toe means keep your mouth shut!)

16. ALBRECHT DURER, 1471-1528: Woodcut, The Holiday Fool


Fig. I6. ALBRECHT DURER, 1471-1528: The Holiday Fool. Woodcut in: Sebastian Brant, The Ship of Fools. Basel, Kupferstichkabinett.

17. F. CREUZER: Old Greek bandage of dedication


Fig. 17. F. CREUZER [20] Old Greek bandage if dedication, Plate XI.

18. F. CREUZER: Symbols of the Mystic, including bandages


Fig. 18. F. CREUZER [20] Plate X. Symbols of the Mystic.

19. A man girded with the bandage of dedication


Fig. 19. A man girded with the bandage if dedication. [10]

20. F. CREUZER: The Greek bandage of dedication


Fig. 20. For comparison again the Greek bandage of dedication, from F. CREUZER [20] (XLI).

21. Mars wearing two bandages of dedication over his armour


Fig. 21. Mars wearing two bandages of dedication on top of his armour.

22. ANDREA PISANO: The Hornblower (La musica)


Fig. 22. ANDREA PISANO The hornblower. (La musica) Florence, Museo delle Opere del Duomo.
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